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What does sports teach us?

Sep 10, 2021

In a word: EVERYTHING! 

I will forever be convinced that everything I experienced as a youngster in swimming made me who I am today.  The easiest way to describe it is to break it down to the 3 Ds: discipline, dedication and determination.

Discipline: I had to get up at 4:30 AM M-F, swim from 5-7 AM, school from 8-3, back to the pool for weights/dryland from 3:30-4:30 PM, and then in the pool again until 6 PM.  Since I was in bed at 8:30-9, you can see that doesn’t leave much time for homework.  So I used every spare minute I had during the day to get as much homework done as I could.  Hence, I have no idea what it means to procrastinate, and I am very good at planning and time-management.  When I have time to do things, I do them.  That’s why I was such a successful student, and why I can now successfully juggle family, triathlon, a full-time job as an attorney, and my side gig: Mountain Flair and Fitness.

Dedication: Any swimmer will tell you that we put in more work than any other sport (gymnastics is a close second, if not equal).  If you’re not dedicated to the sport, you won’t make it.  There is no half-assing swimming.  Honestly, it’s sorta’ sick.  You have coaches constantly yelling at you, telling you can go faster, and then throwing random pieces of pool equipment at you when you don’t (or, in my case, throwing things at me because I keep mouthing off).  But think about it–that’s life, right??  If you want to succeed in anything, you need to put all of your focus and energy into it.  And that’s exactly what swimming taught me to do.  

Determination: If you read my previous post, you’ll know that I endured a LOT of hardship at a very young age.  While that experience sucked (I really want to go to the Olympics), I wouldn’t change it for the world.  I learned how hard life really is; how things rarely go the way you plan.  Like my Mom always says, the key to life is how well you deal with Plan B.  I had Plan B thrown at me at 13, and I had to adapt.  I figured out what I needed to do to keep swimming, and I did it.  What is the life lesson here, you ask??  NEVER GIVE UP!! Keep pushing, keep moving forward, one day at a time.  


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