As I near the intersection of the residential street I am walking down, I can feel myself start to sweat already. The temperature is about 90 degrees and the sun is beating down with the humidity at about 90%…welcome to south Florida. 🌞 Honestly though, I don’t mind, wearing a light pair of shorts and a sleeveless Shirt, the heat actually feels good with the light breeze of salty air. The low hum of traffic in the distance is a constant presence, but in this little section of town, it is fairly quiet, just the sound of mocking birds, blue jays and other birds and animals 🐦 the light wind in the branches; it’s honestly very peaceful. I’ve now walked from one end of the street to the other, and I know my path is clear. I don’t have a cane with me, I am using my ears, listening for the way sound bounces around objects to navigate. Reaching down, I stretch out my legs and back, and then reach up, stretching my shoulders and arms. I’m a little sore from training the day before, 🏋️♂️ but it feels good, it feels like progress. I have several big tournaments coming up, and I need to be ready. Taking out my phone, I pull open the timer app…I’m ready.
The timer on my phone signals, and I start jogging. As I take my first few strides, I give my legs a moment to loosen up, but quickly pick up the pace as my stride opens and my muscles warm up completely. I jog with my back up straight and shoulders back. Using the balls of my feet as the contact point, I pick up speed as I keep a slight flex in my knees and hips to absorb the shock of the impact. Most people are taught to run with their heel striking the ground first, and they naturally lean forward when running. As a trainer, I know this to be wrong, and I feel a slight elation as I run smoothly and pain free in a proper stance. I really enjoy when I can teach people how to do this correctly. My balance shifts back and forth slightly as I feel the shallow V-shaped incline of the flat gutter that I am running in alongside the street. Every time I feel that little angle, I shift my weight ever so slightly to keep my self on a straight path right down the middle of my makeshift running lane. I start to move faster and faster as I blow down the street, slowing only a little when I hear the sound shifting oddly in front of me, but picking it up again when I realize it was just the low hanging branch halfway down the street. 🌿 Step and stride, step and stride, my body finds a rhythm that is just short of a sprint as I near the end of my path. I can hear some traffic up ahead, so I know that I’m nearing the intersection I started at. One final push for speed, and then I begin to stride down, and finally walk until I feel the curb rise up on my left side. I made it to the end. Breathing heavily, I wait for the timer to signal my next exercise, which will be high knee steps. I pull in air and feel the muscles in my calves tight with fatigue, the sweat running off my arms and back, and the slight burn in my lungs. I have only a few seconds, then it signals. High stepping in place, I work my core and foot speed, until the timer signals again. Turning around, I wait for the time. A couple of seconds later, and a beep from my phone in my pocket sounds, and I start my sprint to the other intersection again…only 14 more rounds to go for today.🥵
There are so many barriers that we run into in life that make things more difficult. I could blame my blindness, the heat, traffic, schedule, and any other number of things. None of these are false or invalid, they all make the task more difficult, and I want to recognize this fact. Obstacles are real things that really do make the task more challenging, and there is no shortage of them. The question is this though, will you allow them to prevent your success? 🤔 I think that the difference between people who are successful and those who are not, is not the fact the people who are successful had an easier time of it, and those who are not all had larger obstacles. I believe that those who are successful saw those obstacles as molehills, and those who are not saw them as mountains. Author M.E. Kerr is quoted as saying, “Obstacles are challenges for winners and excuses for losers.” Everyone will face barriers, so which one is it for you, challenge or excuse? 🖊 Write down a goal, big or small, and then write down what has prevented you from accomplishing it, all the excuses you can come up with. Then write next to each excuse, “Challenge.” Let’s turn those mountains back into the molehills that they are. It will not be easy. It will take work, but only you can determine your own success. “You can have results or excuses, but you can’t have both…” Anonymous. ✌️