Lessons From The Olympics

The power of a man increases steadily by continuance in one direction. He becomes acquainted with the resistances and with his own tools; increases his skill and strength and learns the favorable moments and favorable accidents.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

There was a 38-year-old woman running in the London 2012 Olympics 10,000 metre finals. To put this in perspective, David Rudisha, who set his third world record in the men’s 800 metres, is 23. Timothy Kitum, who was 3rd in Rudisha’s record-setting race, is 17.

So to see a 38 year old in the same Olympics, though running a different race, was very pleasing to me. Ok, I admit, it is partly because I will be 38 next month 🙂
I later established that the lady’s name is Joanne Pavey, of Great Britain.

There was also a 40-year-old discus thrower, Virgilijus Alekna, who finished fourth.

Now, remember, these are Olympic-level athletes. They are among the world’s best. Many of us do not expect to take part in the Olympics (and if you do get there, remember  me 🙂 ). We just exercise for fun and to keep fit and healthy, among other benefits. So if a 17 year-old can do it, then you are not too young. If a 38-year-old can do it, then you are not too old. If a 40-year-old can be an Olympics finalist, then you are not too old.
You only need to do you best. Don’t let your age (or other factors) discourage you from doing your best.

I remember seeing a book titled ‘All You Can Do Is All You Can Do, But All You Can Do Is Enough.’ There is a lot of truth in that statement.

Also, I read that the runners who were in the same race with David Rudisha, each either set a personal best or a season’s best in that race. This shows the power of influence. When running with a star, they seem to have put in a little bit extra. So be aware of the company you keep. Hang out with people who will inspire you to do better, to achieve more, to reach higher. Even merely watching those runners inspired me to write this post! 🙂

Choose your company well. Keep going.
All the best!