Day 5,128 – I’m Not an Athlete

sneakersI’ve alluded to it in at least one other post, but I did not do well in sports as a kid. I played baseball and basketball in elementary and middle school, but more out of peer pressure than interest. That’s what we did when we played outside.

In my grade school, we had gym class once per week. And the boys gym class varied with the seasons. In the spring we had an annual track and field day. There were callisthenics, running, jumping, and throwing. I had low upper body strength, so while my friend Tony did pull ups or chin ups way over the count of 20, I struggled to eke out five.

But it was the running that I dreaded most. The fifty-yard dash. For me it was less of a dash than an amble. I would try so hard to run at a fast pace that I would usually fall at the end, my body totally out of control. And still my speed was 3-4 seconds worse than the rest of the field. Maybe it was the converse shoes I wore – there were no Adidas or Nike shoes at that point.

Fortunately, these experiences didn’t turn me away from sports. In college I continued playing intramural basketball, which I loved, and began to play soccer. I was surprised to learn how much I enjoyed it. And when my sons began playing soccer, it gave me the opportunity to be a coach for both of them in the years they played.

I also learned that the word “not” tied to “I am” can be limiting, but doesn’t have to be. Perhaps the title of this post needs to be “I was not an athlete”. You’ll have to stop by tomorrow’s post to find out!

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