Olympics turn inspiration into action

Paula Reece
Paula Reece

The 2016 Summer Olympics are nearly upon us. It’s a time when the country unites to watch and cheer for the athletes. We’re inspired by their dedication to their sports, their talents and their competitive spirit. Watching these athletes can motivate us, whether in competitive sports or self-improvement.

Thinking about what you want is actually similar to how Olympic athletes achieve their goals. Set a goal, make and follow a plan, work hard, allow for some setbacks, stay focused and you’ll succeed. It works.

Many also children are inspired by the Olympics. Watching such events as swimming or gymnastics makes them desire the excitement of cheering fans and winning and also provides role models in which to pursue athletic dreams.

While kids are young, allow them to try a variety of sports and let them select the ones that fit their personalities and talents. It’s obvious from listening to Olympic athletes that their sports of choice are also their passion.

The Olympics also teaches us the fundamentals of many sports. Even if we’re initially unknowledgeable, we learn. We become familiar with these impressive athletes as they swim, cycle, fence and row their way to the podium. Sports featured in the Olympics seem to have an increased following and participation.

It’s interesting how we relate to the athletes when we learn their stories and are inspired about their personal journeys to the Olympics. They had to overcome many of the same issues we face in trying to achieve our own fitness goals, including motivation, injuries and time restraints.

Taking the inspiration into our own lives, it can help us to identify our goals. They could be goals we’ve had for some time or maybe we’re inspired to create new ones. It might mean you work a little harder in your exercise routine, lift a little more weight or run a little faster. Successful goals are very specific and measurable.

There’s no feeling like achieving your goal. Succeeding and winning doesn’t just happen. It takes a lot of work and dedication. Bobby Knight offers one of my favorite quotes: “The will to win is not nearly as important as the will to prepare to win.”

Watching the Olympics doesn’t just give us pride, it also gives us motivation. This is a time when we’re more motivated than ever to turn inspiration into action and live a healthier lifestyle. Take time to cheer for our athletes, but also think about your own goals. What’s holding you back from being the best you can be?