Keep the Pan Am Spirit Alive

Well after all the complaining or excitement, whichever side you were on, the Pan Am Games in Toronto have come to a close. Of course everyone can be skeptical about projects being completed on time, traffic issues and the like, but at the end of the day, watching the Closing Ceremonies, I know I was proud to be Canadian.  It was really something special to witness all of the athletes come together and celebrate their accomplishments all under one roof, seeing each other as friends as opposed to competitors.  It was a time for reflection on the past 16 days and to be proud of the hard work that went into preparing for such an event.

Yes these athletes’ accomplishments may seem out of reach for most of us because, chances are, we aren’t all going to be representing our country at the world stage anytime soon. Even so,, there is still a lot we can take away from a sporting event such as the Pan Am Games.  In fact, some of the lessons we can take away are also ones some of the athletes can remember.

  1. Failure.  Athletes set goals and sometimes are unable to achieve them. Regardless of circumstances this can be a devastating moment in an athlete’s career. At this time, all they can do is reevaluate and come back stronger. Coming up short to achieving goals at the time may sting, but can teach us a lesson about discipline in training or in focusing to keep our mind set on what the goal is.  
  2. No Maybes.  This was Nike’s latest hashtag throughout the Women’s World Cup and I loved it. No matter where you were competing, there were no maybes. Athletes came out leaving everything on the table. It was the moment to perform and compete at the best of their abilities with the training they had put in.
  3. Support.  Yes some countries had more support than others depending on accessibility to the Games, but every venue you walked into or watched on the TV had flags of all competing countries.  Whether it was your own parents sitting in the stands or a fellow citizen of your country, these athletes certainly had their entire countries behind them with full support.  

No matter what your future holds, whether you are training for a 1/2 marathon or just trying to exercise consistently throughout the week, we can all gain some insight from this.  Athletes are humans too, they set goals, surround themselves with supportive friends and family, and they sometimes don’t reach the goals they have set.  No matter what experience level or stage you are competing on we all have to learn to reevaluate our experiences upon completion and see how we can improve.

Hope some of you were able to experience some of the Pan Am Games live.  Big shout out to the Women’s Field Hockey team on their Bronze Medal! 

Be fierce. Be strong. Be vibrant.


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