Bugler’s Dream…Olympics are here!

Hi, my name is Crystal and I am an olympics junkie. Yes, I enjoy watching the tour (de france) every year, along with all the world cups and other races I can get access too, however, there is nothing quite like an event that only happens once every four years. I know there are plenty of you out there who would disagree with me on this, but to me the olympics represents a lot of the good we still have left in this world. Where else can you see men AND women (this is the first year every country had both) competing at the highest level from hundreds of countries? You get to see people of all shapes, sizes and ages (10 to almost 73!), all being rewarded for their hard work and dedication to the sport they love. It’s the one place where sports truly are about the athletes and the sport itself, not about the money!

So instead of biking or getting work done this weekend, what did I do? I watched the olympics on my tv, phone and the internet from the comfort of my couch. I stayed up extremely late for my standards (can’t remember the last time I saw midnight), watched and read everything I could get my hands on related to the events, and loved every minute of it. Now typically I am not someone that can just sit around not doing anything. I get restless very easy and always have to be “doing” something. In fact, this is one of the main reasons Rich and I have yet to take a real vacation, neither of us can picture ourselves sitting around on a beach for a week.

I think in a lot of ways this was exactly what I needed, especially the mental aspect. Today I have been extremely productive, even after not getting a good nights sleep. I’m re-energized to be the best that I can in whatever I do. If people from countries all over the world can overcome daily obstacles and persecution, then what is my problem. Yes, my job can be stressful, but when was the last time my life has been threatened or I was witness to extreme violence against family members. Never, which I am thankful for.

What do I love about the olympics? I love seeing Michael Phelps “shock” the world by only getting 4th in the 400IM. Yes, he is a US athlete, and yes I know and respect him personally, but how great of a motivator is it for kids to not see goliath win? This tells them they don’t have to be the favorite, which I think is a great message we need to tell kids more often. This olympics, in particular, has been great for displaying this lesson. So far, not a single gold medal winner in swimming (individual or relay) from the Beijing olympics has defended their title and walked away with gold again in London.

I also love the fact that a 33 year old woman skeet shooter can decisively win a gold medal, hitting 99/100 targets, set an olympic record, and still have the humility to invite her competitors up on the top step of the podium with her. Looking at Kimberly Rhode, many would not guess she was a top athlete, much less the first American to win individual medals in 5 olympics, and this excites me (especially as a female). This teaches girls you don’t have to be stick thin and play volleyball in order to be successful, both in life and in sports. You can be healthy and strong and beat the men!

The olympics also brings back my passion for the sport I have always loved, swimming. Although I am no longer a competitive swimmer, nor do I really follow the sport much these days, I will always have a special place in my heart for the sport I grew up with. It taught me a lot about discipline, planning your time, teamwork and goal setting. Swimming also gave me the once in a lifetime opportunity to represent my country overseas and gave me a chance to see parts of this country I never would have, as a redneck girl from Ohio.

The olympics does make me somewhat sad in the same sense. I miss the camaraderie surrounding a sport like swimming, and more than that I realize I miss coaching. Regardless of the sport, as a coach you have the opportunity to influence and shape someones life for the better. The feeling you get watching one of your athletes succeed is unparalleled, no matter what the level. I always dreamed of becoming an olympic swim coach, and while that will never come to fruition, I think there are opportunities out there for me. For me, coaching is a great outlet for my strengths; I can be creative, have to be organized and you get to interact with humans regularly.

Not only are the olympics a great opportunity to reflect, as I have done, but it’s a once every four year opportunity to discover new passions, watch sports you used to play, and be proud to be an American!

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About Crystal

I'm a professional archer who also enjoys participating in mountain biking, cyclocross, swimming and running races. I race more for the fun and excitement than for top places and awards (or at least I try!), and my true passion is coaching others. I have a weakness for ice cream and a good espresso. I love being outdoors, and my dream is to one day own 100 acres.

Posted on July 30, 2012, in Other, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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