Bring on the Next Challenge

I was recently standing in a country cemetery with my parents visiting with one of my father’s high school classmates and her son following the death of a long-time neighbor. I had never met either my Dad’s friend or her son though I knew of them. The son thought he might have remembered me. He said, “You were a good athlete in high school. I remember seeing you at the gym.” Both my parents immediately began to laugh. I said, “Umm. No. You are probably thinking of one of my sisters.”

Though I played tennis in junior high and high school, danced with a civic ballet and even began to run in my adult life, completing a couple of half marathons and a few sprint triathlons, no one, including myself, would consider me a competitive athlete. My participation in these activities typically revolved around the social aspects and the cute attire. I’ve never been particularly driven by my performance in comparison with others. I have, however, always welcomed a challenge that pushes me to be healthier and more effective.

For the last seven days, I’ve been participating in the Your Turn Challenge. The challenge was inspired by the Your Turn book by Seth Godin. Seth’s Special Projects Lead Winnie Kao invited a like-minded community to push themselves to write and publish (i.e., “ship”). I learned about the challenge after reading Getting Unstuck (a one week challenge), one of Seth’s daily posts, and clicking on Winnie’s invitation to join her. I joined. I failed to ship on time twice during the week, but I did manage (just under the wire) to publish seven posts in seven days.

It was an inspiring experience. The camaraderie of the community. Reading so many interesting and compelling posts. Digging deep to quell my fears. Realizing once again that, for me, it is not about placing first in my age group, or setting a new personal best (although I suppose you could say that in the category of blogging, this week’s production was my PR), it’s about pushing myself little by little to a new place.

I’m tired, but exhilarated. All I can say is, “Whew!”

Tomorrow, though, I know I will wake up ready. Bring on the next challenge.

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