When I consider something I have never done before, it can look like this picture. It looks like something someone else will do, not little old Mo. I have been wrong.
I never dreamt that I would be on facebook, then there I was. I never dreamt that I would be at the gym, then there I was. I definitely never dreamt that I could jump from the floor to a higher platform, then I did.
I have listened intently to athletes as they shared the importance of visualization. You need only listen to Heather Moyse retelling her Olympic success stories to catch the fever of achievement. Heather and her team mate Kaillie Humphreys won two gold medals at the Vancouver and Sochi Olympics. Heather was a late comer to the sport of Bobsledding, beginning her training at the age of 27. She had a serious physical set back that could have sidelined her, but she persevered. She needed the support of her family and before the Olympics made the brave decision to train, not at the state of the art Calgary site, but at home in PEI. Yes her talent and competitiveness played a huge part, but her ability to improvise, compete and visualize were also key.
I am the absolute opposite to Heather Moyse. I am not athletic, I tend to accept that I can’t do physically challenging things and I have not consciously and deliberately visualized achieving a physical goal. Yet, listening to Heather explain her pursuit of a second gold medal in the bobsleigh really tempted me to try.
At our local Goodlife Gym, I eyed the stack of platforms. I had watched a few others take the platforms out and jump from the floor to the platform in one simple jump. It looked effortless. Eventually I told myself just to walk over to one of the lower platforms, I picked one approximately 18 inches off the floor. It is important to remember that I have no athletic accomplishments beyond the elliptical and cross trainer. I told myself that I could do it and I visualized doing it. With my positive and negative voices bombarding me at the same time, I walked quickly toward the platform, bent my knees and jumped. I reached the platform easily and reverse jumped off again. I repeated this 12 times. I plan to keep training until I can jump at least three feet off the floor.
Now I know a few more things about myself: I listen well; I can out motivate my defeatist voices; and, I can still achieve lifetime firsts late in my career.