When I was preparing to launch my Continuum Coaching website I spent hours thinking (likely overthinking) about the word “athlete” and what it means. Would it freak people out and scare them away? Why do so many people hesitate to call themselves athletes? What is so threatening or daunting about being an “athlete?” I have friends who have done amazing cycling and running events and they still waiver on saying “I am an athlete!”
I looked up the formal definition of athlete to see what I was missing and I discovered that the vagueness of the definition suites me perfectly!
ath·lete A person who is proficient (pro·fi·cient competent or skilled in doing or using something) in sports and other forms of physical exercise.
I think this definition swings the door wide open to anyone who participates in a physical effort to feel like and be…an athlete. There are no specific criteria or qualities that an athlete must possess. Whether you are mall walking, snow shoeing, doing a spin class, or running the dog around the neighborhood…you are an ATHLETE!
On my website I use the tagline “find your “badass athlete.” You can’t imagine the push back I’ve received from friends and colleagues who thought the word athlete would scare some people away because many don’t consider themselves athletes. I know you didn’t all play high school sports or maybe you did but you think that was too long ago to count. Or maybe there was an “athlete in the family” and it wasn’t you! Whatever preconceived notions you have about what an athlete looks like I want you to do me a favor…look in the mirror and see an athlete!
I am here to tell you that we all have an “athlete” inside of us and if you find the activity you like best you can become an amazing athlete…even a “badass athlete!”