|Janet Evans, 40 year old Mom of 2- inspiring in the pool!|
What a way to start 2012- be inspired by all the women who are pushing farther and farther outside the norm of sports' comfort zones. Just this week, Janet Evans qualified for the 400 meters at the US Olympic Trials. She is 40 years old and will be one of the most decorated Olympians if all goes according to plan. Dara Torres was 2nd in the 50 meter free in the US Winter Nationals in December, after returning post knee surgery at ...age 44!
You hear it every day and read about it in magazines ranging from Redbook and InStyle, to Fitness and SELF. "I found my body when I turned 40, a confidence clicked and there was no turning back once I got hooked on exercise." But it not just exercise- it is the lifestyle change of becoming an athlete. It is the identification process of not just working out, but having a sport you can call your own.
Janet and Dara were swimmers their entire lives. They don't know a world outside of swimming. Janet having competed for Stanford, while Dara competed on the University of Florida swim team. Post college, many of us start working, play it up in the young 20's scene, have fun and maybe go to the gym or run recreationaly. But often, we forget about the sport we used to identify with. WHY? Why stop when there is only a big future in front of you to fine tune your athletic skills? It is never to late.
|Dara Torres-44 year old Mom is making waves|
Why is it the beginning, you ask? Because as you get older, you often possess a gift of throwing away the concerns filtering through many "younger athletes". The little voices repeating, "You aren't the fastest" slip to the side, and your inner strength can push through stomping those mean voices to the ground. At this age, the focus on hardwork and developing skills is there. The focus to not waste training time is there; you know as a busy Mom juggling a career and being an athlete, that your workout and training time is set on the calendar and if you miss it, you miss it!
I personally am not 40 years old yet; I just turned 36 one month ago. But as I have been told by many friends, I often have the mindset of a 40 year old from having embraced lifes challenges. I understand that life gives us hiccups along the way and nothing is guaranteed to go according to plan, even when we detail every event in our smartphone calendar. From the knowledge that we have one life, it and one opportunity to seize the day athletically, I know to embrace each opportunity and GO FOR IT!!
If Janet and Dara can race against younger gals and beat them in the pool, what is holding you back from lacing up your soccer cleats again? What fear is making you keep you bike on the rack in the garage verses on the road climbing hills training for your next triathlon? Yep, I think that would be the sound of crickets because there are no excuses...
Cheers and as always, take time to Challenge the Power of YOU