What is an Athlete?

What is an Athlete?

I have been thinking about this….Webster defines it like this:

a person who is trained in or good at sports, games, or exercises that require physical skill and strength

I would never define myself as an athlete. But Now I think I must?

I must tell you that I am not an athlete in the normal sense of the word.

ask anyone who knows me. I am completely uncoordinated. I am not a competitive person by nature. I am not strong physically and I don’t have it  in me to think two steps ahead to be competitive in sports. I don’t like risks. I don’t like getting dirty…I don’t think I can sacrifice my body to jump or slide in the dirt…..i don’t like aggressive people or going and stealing a ball from someone. Seriously. It’s not in me.

So when you think of a typical athlete…my picture is not what you are going to see.

Last week I logged 25 miles of jogging and 4 hours of swimming laps.

now when I say that ….if you saw me swim you might think it’s a joke.

I don’t know how to swim like other people. I am so fearful and uncoordinated to swim like normal lappers. I can’t seem to coordinate the head movement to take a breath out of the side of my mouth while moving my arm. I come up and take a breath then go back down. So I can’t have seamless movements. I Have tried to get it….but it’s not there. so I just do the best I can. My motto is to just keep moving…burn the calories. So as long as I am moving the whole time….I feel good about that.

I am getting bikes for Rob and I this year so we can ride bikes together.

Even when I was young and rode my bike everywhere….I was a wussy bike rider. I would push my bike up and down steep hills. I didn’t want anyone riding to close to me….and I was happy to be behind everyone so I knew nobody would creep up on me ..because I am a nervous bike rider. So  normal athletic bike rider might think I was funny…ect.  I am not an athlete in the normal sense of the word.

But I have been dedicated for the last 8 months.

I get out and work out each week..several times a week. I am an athlete in the sense that I am getting better, stronger, disciplined and burning calories. I have given up on the idea that I am “normal” in this arena. I am not. But I am passionate about my health and body……so I keep trying and working.

I am sharing all of this because I don’t want anyone to think that I am misrepresenting myself as this great athlete. I am not.

I am also sharing this because there should be no excuses for any of you. If you aren’t comfortable..get out there…just do it. Nobody cares. Who cares what you look like while completely the task..you will look and feel amazing in your own skin and that is a far greater feeling. We can be uncoordinated athletes together. It’s about so much more.

I know who I am. I am very aware of my strengths and weakness’. So what comes easy to me is artsy things, crafty things, quilting designs…it’s not athletics. I am ok with that knowledge and I just do the best I can. I am getting what I need to get out of it and it’s is blessing me..in more than one way.

I get the benefits of the burning of calories..and the humbleness to know that I have to do something that I am not talented with. It’s something that I NEED to do. now you see I have chosen activities that don’t effect others.

I choose to do single activities. NOt team efforts. I don’t want to hurt a team activity by failing each week…..and I am a self starter..that is something I happen to be good at. I don’t need someone to help me get out there and exercise. I can motivate myself ( mostly) and letting a team down every chance I get wouldn’t be good for my self esteem. So I choose to jog, swim laps, bike & hike ect.

I still can’t will myself to join a gym. I don’t want to pay the $$ and I also can’t imagine sitting in a sweaty gym when the outside is so much better. But I think I am actually getting to a point where I might have too. I am not really doing anything to create muscle….everything is cross training and I need muscle to burn calories. I hate that…..so we shall see.

So am I an athlete? Yes. I am now defining myself as an athlete. Maybe all athletes don’t have to look a certain way or do things in a certain way. Maybe an athlete is just someone who is passionate about her body and health. Maybe an athlete is someone who is disciplined and just does something active more days than not?  Maybe an athlete is someone who feels healthy and strong because of the work she puts in every week.

Just like an artist isn’t just a person who paints on canvas..an artist can also be a quilter. An athlete doesn’t just play ball and compete…an Athlete can just be happy training everyday at living a good active life. That’s my definition anyway.

I am inspired by many of you everyday…..I hope I inspire you to get out and live your best life.







6 thoughts on “What is an Athlete?

  1. Thank you for continuing to share. Your readiness to perform these athletic tasks in a “non-athletic presentation” is inspiring to so many of us who are just like you!!!

  2. C,
    When I read the part about how you swim I thought OMG that’s me. I can only swim underwater or above the water. I can’t take the breath and put my head back down. I’ve tried for years and just can’t do it. But it doesn’t matter, as long as I’m moving.
    In fact you sound exactly like me in athletics. But the big difference is that you are moving a lot every week. That’s fantastic. I’m so lazy. Everything I like to do is sedentary- needlework, reading, stuff like that. One problem I have with cardio is that when my heart rate goes up it feels just like when I have a panic attack and I hate that feeling. I do yoga though.
    Anyway, this post is about YOU not ME!!! Love it!

  3. Charisma, dear:
    You amaze me with all that you do. I don’t think we should worry about labels, just be who you are: a perfect child of God. I cannot ride a bike, skate or do a fancy dive, but I can swim easily. I taught swimming right out of high school to all ages, and wish I could work with you on your breathing, BUT, the thing is, you try, and succeed! It is just your style! As coordinated as you are in quilting those beautiful, outstanding patterns, I am surprised that you have a problem with your swimming rhythm, but do NOT worry about it. You have accomplished so much this past year, you deserve a big award of some sort. You are a beautiful heroine in my eyes and I want you to love yourself and continue to be successful in every walk of your life. I am your number one “grandma” cheering squad. Keep up the good work. Much love to you. xxxoooxxxooo

  4. It doesn’t matter how you swim. My mom does the “dog paddle”. My sister and used to laugh at the way she swims. We had a pool in a pool in our back yard and mom swam every day. Before we got the pool mom went to a gym three times a week. I guess mom got the last laugh as she is still paddling up and down the pool and my sister and I haven’t seen a pool in years. By the way my mom is 96 years old and her sister just passed away at the ripe old age of 100

  5. Oh Dear one, you are so silly ,
    you are a athlete You move everyday ,you
    use you body and mind for good things.
    You make a lot of us think and help us express our
    self You put down what alot of us think, and don’t know how
    to say it . Keep up the good work
    lol even you Dearly

  6. I am impressed that you log 25 miles each week. Wow That is awesome. I average a couple of miles each day but that is no where near what YOU accomplish! thank you for sharing. I think you are a great manager of time. Not only do you work out, you take care of your family, and you produce such beautiful work! You accomplish alot!
    thank you for sharing! An Inspiration to us all! Kathleen

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