I ran in a 5K last week.
But this post is not about my running exploits.
It is about what is probably the most important life lesson that we teach our athletes.
Learning how to compete.
Back to the race…
My wife entered us in the race several months ago. During the time leading up to the 5K, school started and football practice began, so as most of you know priorities shifted. I ran less… in fact I hardly trained at all.
Throw in the fact that I had a 4-day hospital stay, and it turns out that in the month leading up to the race I did not run at all.
The day before the 5K I told myself (and others… my wife included) that I was just going to go out and do an easy run/ walk… just enjoy the day and contribute to the good cause (Pink Laundry 5K) of fighting breast cancer.
Well, the morning of the race things began to change.
In the 30 minutes prior to the start my adrenaline began pumping. I looked around and surveyed the competition… men I deduced were in my age group.
Butterflies took off in my stomach.
I hung at the starting line with my wife and our 9-year-old niece… still thinking I might just run with them.
But then the gun went off… the clock began ticking… and that piece of my brain that MUST compete turned on…
Sorry for the double negative but…
I Can’t Not Compete!
Somewhere along the line someone ingrained in me the importance of competing… I am not sure if it was my parents, or Coach Leckie (my PE teacher at Johnson Elementary School), Coach Stillwagon (my first “real” football coach at Ervin Jr. High) Fred Merrell (my high school football coach) or Larry Fischer (my high school track coach)
Maybe it was a combination of all of their teaching and coaching.
Whatever or whoever it was, I am grateful … because that voice in my head (whoevers voice it is) pushing me is always there… has always been there… and will always be there.
When I say always… I mean always!
It is not just there when I am running a race or coaching a game.
- It is there when I am making lesson plans
- It is there when I am preparing for an interview
- It is there when I am teaching a class
- It is there when I am presenting at a clinic
- It is there when I am writing a post for my blog
That inner voice pushing me to do my best is always there… has always been there… and will always be there.
All of the life lessons we teach are important.
Teaching our athletes the value of competing… of always doing their best… may be the most important.
Ours is an awesome job… with awesome responsibilities.
You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you… Don’t Believe It!
Jeff Floyd – firstname.lastname@example.org