Is There A Competitor In You?

Last night, like any other night, I was contemplating life and the meaning behind it and what I could do to change myself to make the people around me better.  I got to thinking about the Biggest  Loser episode and I quickly sent myself an email titled ‘Is There A Competitor In You?’  That was the entire email and when I woke up this morning and saw the BlackBerry flashing I looked at the email and on to the pool I went.

I kept thinking about the episode from last night and it dawned on me that I am a competitor.  I compete at just about anything.  I love watching competition and not just for winners and losers, but for the act of pushing yourself to be better.  Better than yourself.  Better than your opponent.  Just better.

I am not a quitter.  I don’t know what that word means.  To  me the word quit is worse than any four letter word that George Carlin ever used.  It goes hand in hand with can’t.  As Coach C pointed out during mile 20 of the Dallas White Rock Marathon….‘THIS IS WHERE WE SAY WE CAN.  THOSE THAT CAN DO AND THOSE THAT CAN’T DROP OUT’  Was she kidding me with those words?  Out came The Fighter and I’m not taking about Marky Mark.  No way was I stopping.  No way was I quitting.  No way, no way, no way!

Do you have a competitor in you?  One who sets goals that are on the edge of your fingertips and will strive and do whatever it takes to get to that goal, grip it and then find the next just out of reach goal?  Are you capable of pushing yourself for one more step?  One more mile?  One more flip turn?  Are you willing to try to get to the next level?  When you set goals are they the ones you know you can achieve or are they the type that you question yourself about repeatedly until you get there?

For me nothing is impossible.  I have had this mindset my whole life.  I have always thought that with work all successes can be achieved and why limit myself.  As an adult you fall into these routines and you begin to accept them, but once you do you realize that there is no getting better and there is just status quo.  Who wants to be status quo?  Don’t you want to be better than that even if it is just for yourself?

Competition brings out the best in all.  It brings out the best in you and allows you to see that you can accomplish anything and allows you to push others to be better today than they were yesterday.

As an example of how much I love competition I was once caught watching a double dutch competition on ESPN (maybe it was The Ocho) and yelling at the TV for the girls to go, go, go.  I was caught on the treadmill during the NYC Marathon yelling at Paula Radcliffe to kick it in and go, go, go.  I have been seen running around the house self-high fiving myself because of a great play that the athlete just did not give up on.  Anybody remember Don Beebe chasing down Leon Lett?  Don did not give up and he pushed himself to catch Leon and did.  What do you think that did for his teams morale at that moment (I know they lost, but for a moment everybody thought anything was possible.)

Challenge yourself to be better and you will end up pushing others to be better.  That is the beauty of competition.  As you improve so do others.

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  1. Meg O says:

    Awesome post! I had to laugh at you yelling go to girls in a double dutch competition. I never realized I was competitive until I started taking running seriously. Luckily my biggest competitor is myself. i think you have to be somewhat of a competitor to get anywhere in training, otherwise what will motivate you to aspire to complete something new?

  2. She said I need a goal says:

    I love this post. I am not, never have been competative. I don't live in that mindset. I was never a quitter before but my life changed and so did I. I am now getting back to who I really am and the old non-quitter is coming back.

  3. Karen R says:

    I love the line "who wants to be status quo?" Awesome. It is so true.

    So, I'm off to better myself! :)

  4. Morgan says:

    I am so pumped up and ready to go run my MLR now! Great post Jason! I agree with Karen above, best part was "who wants to be status quo"?

  5. Jeff - DangleTheCarrot says:

    Don Beebe! One of my favorite players of all time. Love it!

  6. Black Knight says:

    Beautiful post. Difficult topic: i am a competitor when I can because in the life we cannot fight battles already lost before starting.

  7. Laura says:

    Love this…I have really been working on my mental training this time around in my run clinic and am getting better at Just one more – one more minute, one more repeat, one more km repeat etc..
    Our coach is amazing at getting us to get out of our heads and 'suffer' in our training because we really can.

  8. Jill says:

    I always felt when I stepped on the start line of a marathon that I had to finish faster with each race, because at the time, I equated faster with better. But I have learned with this F(*$ing heel injury that I can still be competitive within myself in different areas other than a finish line time. It's taken me a LONG time to accept that but I think I'm almost there.

  9. Kovas says:

    I'm not particularly competitive, with myself or others, more of someone looking to enjoy or learn from experience. Maybe that's why I don't improve quickly. :)

  10. TRI714 says:

    STONE COLD BROTHER !! Love it !

  11. Jason says:

    Kovas you just put the definition of competitor in your comment. Learning from experience makes you better doesn't it? You may not mark down the goals and attempt to achieve them but each time you learn from your experience and pass that on through your blog or to your family you made them better. That in turn is seen by somebody else and in turn they get better.

  12. misszippy says:

    Oh yes, major competitor in here! Sometimes I think I need to keep it a bit more in check, but it gets the job done when I need it to.

  13. Caratunk Girl says:

    I am not really competitive…Unless I see the finish line and there is anyone ahead of me. Then I must pass them…or if we are at a pool and the person next to me is kicking too, I want to beat them…or..if I am on a long XC ski trip, I have to be the first one to the cabin if it kills me.

    OK. I am competitive.

  14. lindsay says:

    B b but, high school musical says to stick to the status quo. Yeah so maybe I saw that one or 20 times… There is always something upbeat going on here at LOAAT. Thank you for that

  15. Bill and Debra says:

    I consider myself to be somewhat competitive…great post. I did Marathon Makeover 2007 and 2008 and went and ran the Chicago Marathon. Greatest experience ever to accomplish. Good Luck with MM.


  16. RockStarTri says:

    I started writing a post a long time ago titled "are you an athlete or a competitor." I never finished it but you did a great job on it.

    I am a non traditional competitor. I don't care if I win but I will do everything not to lose. This goes way beyond sports.

  17. Jim ... 50after40 says:

    It's one of the big things that drive me, always trying to prove to myself I can be better.


  1. […] does it mean. For each individual it is going to mean something different. The same way that being competitive means something different to each person. There is no one definition and I think that we can say […]

  2. […] does it mean. For each individual it is going to mean something different. The same way that being competitive means something different to each person. There is no one definition and I think that we can say […]

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