In my youth, I enjoyed a lot of success as an athlete. I was blessed with a decent amount of natural ability, and my athleticism carried me pretty far. But once I started losing out to younger, bigger, stronger, faster, and more skilled athletes, I realized that just showing up wasn’t enough anymore. And when combined with the challenges of being a full blown adult (career, marriage, kids, homeownership, etc…), I began to struggle not only in my athletic pursuits, but also in my general health and fitness. I realized that for long term success, I needed to stop making excuses and just do the work. Now, I’m dedicated to sharing that realization with anyone and everyone who is willing to listen.
There comes a point in most of our lives when we look in the mirror and realize that we aren’t what we used to be. For me, that point occurred in the fall of 2015. I saw a photo of myself and was embarrassed by what I saw. As a lifelong athlete, I had let myself get out of shape and I blamed it on my busy life. Honestly, I just didn't feel like myself anymore. So, in an attempt to find an efficient way to balance a healthy lifestyle, a career as a Software Engineer, and the responsibilities of a parent, I started doing CrossFit. Over the next year, that casual interest developed into a full blown obsession. A former competitive volleyball player, my renewed interest in fitness allowed me to return to the competition floor for the 2016 USA Volleyball Championships after a 5 year hiatus, arguably in the best shape of my life. And although my performance exceeded my expectations, the greater reward was that I finally felt like me again.
I’ve traveled from the land of the athlete to the land of the dad bod and back again, and I want people to know that life doesn’t have to end when we age, and especially when we have children. We have a responsibility to live as long and as healthy a life as we can for the sake of our loved ones, and we also have the opportunity to serve as some of the greatest role models our loved ones will ever know. Do we want them to think that life ends at 40 and that we simply can’t find the time or the energy to be active anymore? Or do we want them to think that it’s still possible to prioritize health, fitness, and trying new things regardless of what life throws at us? For me, that’s an easy choice.