Instead, I loved the outdoors; played hard outside climbing trees, swinging from vines, and riding my bicycle recklessly down the street; “Look, ma, no hands!” I loved music, dance, and the theatre. I didn’t fear flunking at the things I loved to do. Maybe I was an athlete in a very different sense; a tom boy!
But, one day, when I was in my thirties—sick with asthma, a hiatal hernia, overweight, and feeling very depressed, I found an inner athlete emerging. I found conviction, strength, courage, and resiliency that started to find its place inside me through the love of aerobics and strength training. Slowly a new story of me began to take shape. I began imagining me as an empowered woman. I did this by applying the skills and behavior and mind-set of an athlete. When I said “I can’t,” I changed the phrase to “I can.” I willed myself to succeed as an educator, entrepreneur, business woman, life coach, and sports psychologist. I applied mental rehearsal to see challenges as opportunities; change my perspective of myself and others. I soared because I did not set limits on my life even in situations where there were/are constraints. There was no longer room or excuses for failure.
That is why I am so eager to share how sport, exercise, and fitness saved me and others like me. It is why in hearing other inspirational stories of individuals who overcame obstacles like addiction, depression, abuse, injury, illness for example compelled my friend, Paul Schienberg and me to compile “Saved by Sport: 5 Stories of Courage, Triumph, and Finding Your Inner Athlete” as the first in a series of Ebooks.
We want others to know there is hope; there is an inner athlete in all of us.