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What is an athlete?

Image from Flickr, by DVIDSHUB
What is an athlete?

In our day, an athlete represents what the warrior did to ancient man.  They are, essentially, the most physically adept members of society.  Athletes are those who walk into a room and demand your attention.  They are fit.  They are trim.  They are healthy.

Warriors of that bygone era were as well.  Today, our warriors are still gifted with incredible courage, but technology fills the gaps where the physical once held dominion.  While they are still physically fit, and are great role models in a great many ways, they no longer represent the pinnacle of fitness.

Today, it is the athlete.

The athlete is the one who gets up at before the sun has even risen.  They hit the roads for their run, or they hit the gym for their weight training.  They fill their refrigerator not with food, but with fuel and raw materials to make their bodies the best they can be.

Athletes make tough decisions.  They eschew the easy road.  The walk upon the road less traveled.  They fuel their bodies, their minds, and their souls with only what is best for them.  They transform their lives into the living embodiment of what it means to be an athlete.

Image from Flickr, by familymwr
The term "athlete" is often used to describe someone who is good at a sport.  It's not.  A gifted football player who never really embraces their talent is a player.  They're not an athlete.  An athlete is the kid who lacks the talent, but has the drive that pushes them through the limits.

Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team his freshman year.  He took that, used it as fuel, and trained.  Hard.

The results are clear.  The Chicago Bulls would never have won those NBA championships without him.  Jordan was an athlete.

You can be too.

You are here because you want it.  You're here because, at some level, you need it.  Embrace it.  Embrace the beast within.  Embrace it and make it your own.  Use it.  Love it.  Feed it.  Nurture it.

I am an athlete.  Are you?