Welcome, today I'd like to share a segment of a journey of a thousand miles. A journey that has so far taught that greatness is within, and not only within ourselves but within those that surround us. When I first decided to go back to school to earn my Master's in Sport and Physical Education, I never realized that the most rewarding transformation would be the opportunity to experience other's reaching their personal excellence.
This truly came unexpectedly. As a partial requirement for my degree, I had to complete 150 internship hours related to the area of sport and physical education. My original view was that these internship hours offered the chance to scope out future career ventures, see what I liked or didn't like. It was more or less, a testing of the waters without the obligation of being an employee or the benefit of receiving a paycheck. All in all, it was a check mark off a to do list.
The first 80 hours were completed by enrolling as a participant at a premier health and wellness facility called Fitness Ridge, which is a Biggest Loser Resort. The goal was to experience first hand what it would be like to accomplish a physical transformation towards a life-changing event. I came in knowing that my fitness level was moderate. I knew that the trainers job included pushing each participant past their limit in order to help them see what they were capable of, and though the thought made me a little anxious, it also was intriguing.
With 24 hours under my belt, I quickly realized that my goals merely represented a small part of a much bigger picture. That, in order to make this transformation, I had to realize that each person here had came to change their life. For many, it was a chance to correct a path of choices that were leading to the dramatic difference between life or death, or quality of life or imprisonment. For others, it was a retreat, a way to relax and find oneself. Suddenly, a signed piece of paper saying I was here, didn't seem so important.
It was through these individuals triumphs, their sweat, their tears, and their stories that my heart swelled with appreciation, compassion, and love. No matter how different we seemed from one another, I suddenly realized that the people sharing in this experience were all amazing. And, the best part was, I was able to take part with them in realizing this.
I witnessed the human spirit encouraging the body to transform. I witnessed the agony of pushing past defeat. I witnessed that no matter how much I thought I knew and understood, there is a constant chance to learn and grow from each experience and each individual story.
For me, I found that greatness is not something that you are either born with or without. Greatness is alive in every one of us. And I truly mean every one of us! It really comes down to how committed are you to find it. How willing are you to make small changes that lead to amazing feats. Remember, a setback is only a set-back, if you stay there.
It's truly amazing knowing that as we continue further down our path, there may come a time when doubt arises, yet that is when we will realize that we have came too far to walk back. In that moment, we will find comfort in knowing that no matter how different we all may be, others will be there to help push and carry us to the next leg of the journey. That is when we will realize that this journey of a thousand miles is reached through the combined efforts of various sized footprints. All different. Yet, all with something in common, the search for greatness.
This next leg of the journey has been a blast.
The Biggest Loser sparked a crazy bone within and shifted my goals to focus on the obesity epidemic that our nation's youth are facing.
Through the use of this blog and volunteer work, I hope to reach out to individuals and share the importance of keeping kids active.
Some of the activities that we have done as a family to help promote the awareness of healthy lifestyles (which are written and posted throughout the blog) are:
Being volunteers at kids sport and charity events
Participating as a family in weekend triathlons
Teaching and coaching youth sport
Racing and volunteering at the Spartan Challenge - an obstacle course endurance race
Some of the outdoor recreational activities that we have shared in to reach the goal of staying active for 60 minutes a day include: Repelling, Spelunking, Hiking, Biking, Swimming, and playing various sports.