Wednesday, January 09, 2008

I Was the Skyjumper

Can I tell you what it is like to sprint at the fastest speed, plant a 15-foot long pole into the ground, and launch yourself straight up into the sky?

It is the most relaxing place I've ever been. The moment where you stop going higher and begin to come back down to earth - freeze that moment. Peace and comfort. Me being me. Pole Vaulting. Jumping. Skyjumping. That's what we called it.

But one day, it all ended abruptly. I didn't have enough speed as I ran down the runway. I jumped anyway, got about two-thirds of the way up, then came back down way off-center. I landed on an uneven surface, my knee twisted to the sound of a gun shot, and I screamed.

I never jumped again.

It was okay I guess. I found rowing after that and that led me to the same spiritual place, albeit, through a totally different movement.

You see, I have an itch. I've learned that I am not so comfortable idling. There seems to be a spiritual state that opens up for me when my heart rate is around 155 and my body is moving rhythmically. This is where I feel at peace with myself. And if a fellow athlete is alongside me, well, that is where a powerful connection develops. Rowing was beautiful because it was eight of us in the boat, all moving together, feeling each other's rhythms. When eight heavyweight rowers red-line their heart rates together and can still stay relaxed and bonded... Well, that is a special special place for me.

I am missing that place right now and I'm wrecked over it. I hurt my knee again and badly. Not one stride I take is without pain.

I walked by 3 gentlemen playing squash today. They danced with each other perfectly on the court. Synchrony to their motions yet they are trying to beat each other. How is that?

I'm the lion in a cage now. I wanted to play too but I can hardly walk! I didn't want to play to beat anyone, I wanted to play so that I can move alongside my opponent. It's the dance that I'm after. It's the bond. It's the most honest moment I know in life. Two people head-to-head competing, giving their everything. But it's not to beat each other. Its to connect.

My heart wanted to leap out of my body and find another one.

No comments:

About Me

My photo
NY, New York, United States
I'm 34 years old, the proud father of 2 beautiful children and husband to Jennifer, a beautiful, smart, and very caring woman. I'm an athlete - someone that was blessed with the ability to move fast and fluidly past, around, up and over my opponents. But, my body now reminds me that those days are numbered. I'm the Founder of Agile Fitness, a company dedicated to helping others achieve their fitness goals. Resume: - Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist ('96). - Bachelor of Arts & Science, University of Delaware, ('95) - Masters in Business Administration, Baruch College Zicklin School of Business ('01)