If you were one of the lucky ones to be involved in organized sports as a kid, you know what I’m talking about when I say; sport has helped shape who I am today. It was the focal point of my life ever since I could walk, and I guess you could say things haven’t really changed.
As a teenager, I didn’t care much about “what I wanted to be when I grew up” or even going to school for that matter. The only reason I even went to University in the first place, was to play varsity rugby. So I can say now, thank goodness for sport because I owe my entire post-secondary education to it. I value education a lot more today than I did back then, but a lot of what I learned as an athlete is to thank for that too.
Today, I am a fitness competitor, a powerlifting and contest prep coach, and I own a great business that my friend and I built from scratch. I’ve faced a lot of tough decisions and the temptation to follow the pack but the attributes I acquired through my involvement with sports have pushed me to achieve my goals no matter what. As athletes, we learn pretty early that we’re inevitably going to lose; we’re going to be knocked down…a lot, but you never stop playing the game. You’ll face conflict with team mates, have injuries, meet tough and more talented opponents, and play in less than ideal conditions, but we learn to problem solve. We learn to play anyway and we do it with heart.
Being an athlete is one of the most important things I will have ever done because I will carry those skills into everything I do in life. I will respect my opponents but I will battle fairly, I will overcome obstacles with poise, I will confidently face adversity, and I will not give up. I now have the ability to teach others these skills, and that in itself is success to me. I can thank some of the great coaches I’ve had along the way that have demonstrated unwavering belief in their team and exceptional leadership abilities. I’ve been able to learn from some of the best, and I’m working on achieving that same greatness.
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