The Rio Olympics have come and gone, with many exciting moments, heart-felt stories, incredible performances, and even agonizing defeats.
While most of us certainly will never qualify for an Olympic games, we can approach life as a sport, and try to up our game of mental prowess, will to succeed, engagement with our environment, and self-confidence; all the traits that make great athletes.
All great athlete’s recognize the need for conditioning and practice during training season, as well as off-season rest and recuperation. As a Life Athlete, we also must recognize that we can’t go non-stop in our work and play environments 24/7 and expect any kind of longevity and / or improvements. We need to think of mini-vacations, days off, and retreats as our “off season”. A time to let our body’s and minds rest, rejuvenate, and heal. It makes us fresh and ready for “another season”, “another olympics”, “another competition”. So what I’m suggeting is, don’t over-train in life and peak too soon or burn yourself out prematurely. Pace yourself and be in it to win it over the long run, kind of like an actual long-distance running competition.
So many top athlete’s push themselves to be better and better at their sport. As a Life Athlete, it’s important to do the same, with things like finances, family & loved-ones, faith & spirituality, community & volunteering, and our jobs & careers. Don’t let yourself get complacent. Set personal growth, interpersonal skills, and leadership goals for yourself. Continually strive to be better in all aspects of your life! That’s what builds confidence along the way. And, your will to succeed is stronger when you are focused on being a better person.
Of course exercise and eating right is critical for an Olympian, and it’s also very beneficial for a Life’s Athlete. Many psychiatrists and therapists will ask a new patient about their diet when dealing with common issues like depression and anxiety. Food controls mood and your life is too important to be on auto-pilot with your nutrition. As well, exercise promotes endorphins, those positive brain chemicals that can help make a level 3 problem seem like what it is and not a level 10 problem. Take a hard look at your diet and exercise and make sure it’s where you need it to be to succeed in your life. Constantly tweak and re-evaluate your food management.
Most good coaches will tell their athletes to “let the game come to you”. In other words, don’t try to force it, be in the moment, and trust yourself. The same is true in life. One way to practice being in the moment is through mindfulness and meditation. Do you remember the social media viral “Phelps Face” from the recent Rio Games in Swimming, when Michael was tapping into his inner Obi one Kenobi, using “the force” to be in the moment and not let anything distract him from winning another gold medal? Well, a Life Athlete can harness the same “force” and clarity through practicing meditation daily. It doesn’t have to be a long and uncomfortable process, just 30 minutes a day can do wonders and really connect you with your environment and sharpen your mental prowess!
I’m cheering YOU on now, Mr. and Mrs. Life Athlete, to reach new heights, win at the game of life; however you may define that, and inspire others with your purpose, drive, and passion!
May you step on that medal stand and be proud of your achievements.
Jack Witt, MS, CPT
Fitness and Health Coach
Individuals / Groups / Corporate
310.562.5629 Cell / 818.760.3891 Main
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