I normally hate motivational sayings and posters, being much more of a fan of the demotivational ones offered by despair.com, Earlier this morning, though, I loved hearing the words that are the title of this post. At the time, I was crab-walking across a soccer field, last in a group of more than 60 people. I had somewhat held my own during the bear crawl across the field, but the 25 star jumps once I got to the other side slowed me down a bit, and by the middle of the crab walk back across the field, I was in last place. By the time everyone else had finished and started to move on to the next field, I was still working on the third of the four exercises sets we were supposed to do. Given that we were supposed to find a buddy when we finished, I ended up being my own best friend.
Yes, Seal Team Physical Training is kicking my butt in a major way, but that's okay. For someone who has spent 56 years being so competitive that she eventually stopped playing most board games and any sports in which there had to be a winner, last place is a new place to be. I am learning that someone has to be last, and that the only losing is quitting. I am learning that I can do more than I think I can, and to pace myself to stay the course rather than to try to win. I am actually enjoying doing something at which I have no expectation of winning. I may not be able to win, but as long as I keep at it, I know I won't lose.
I particularly like that so many of the Seal Team exercises are done with partners or in a group, and that the goals set are for the group. If the goal is 100 situps, and I do 30 to my partner's 70, that's okay. Any contribution counts. For someone who many times has been the counterexample to "works and plays well with others" and who actively avoided any classroom group projects ever proposed, this is a major step forward. I hope that someday I might be contributing half of the goal for a buddy pair or the even percent of the goal of a larger group, but for now I will contribute what I can and try to contribute more the next time.
If you read my last post, you know that the reason I am doing Seal Team PT is to train for something called the GoRuck Challenge which sounds as if it's something like 12-14 Seal Team sessions, one right after another. I'll try to remember there what I'm learning here, that the only losing is quitting and that any contribution counts. I can do this; I really can. As they say in Seal Team, hoo-yah!