I am very happy and extremely surprised to report that I am able to walk today with a minimal amount of hobbling. Sure, my thighs are feeling a little tight, my arms feeling a little heavy, but the fact that I was able to get out of bed without screaming out in pain is a MAJOR victory in my book.
It tells me I'm still able to do things I didn't think I'd be able to do...at least without it putting me on my back for a few days.
Yesterday was an amazingly exciting and fun day, and I'm so happy that I decided to take part.
Our volleyball tournament started at 9AM. The day was made up so that we would play against three different teams in our "pool" to get an order in which we would then play teams from the other pool. Then, the winners from those games would go on to play against each other in a single elimination style to get a champion.
So, right away, we knew we'd be playing at least 4 sets.
The first three sets were made up of two games, first to 25.
The first team we played beat us. 10-25 and 15-25. But, we weren't really warmed up. We needed to find our groove, that was all. At least, that's what we told ourselves.
Then, we played a team of teenagers. I will say right now, I was extremely intimidated seeing these young, athletic competitors walk out on to the court. They were half our age, so I'll admit that I was totally ready for them to wipe the floor with us.
But, you know what? They didn't! OK, so they beat us, but only by a few points. The final scores were 25-20 and 25-23. MUCH better than our first game.
So, we had four losses (games) to kick off the day. We then had an hour break, so we decided to all go and eat an early lunch together. It was so nice to sit down and eat a meal with co-workers on a day that wasn't a meeting or being at work. We laughed, we chit-chatted, and we relaxed.
Being able to have a little fun with the principal (soon to be assistant superintendent) and teachers from different grade levels was so nice. A way to network, branch out from my normal group of people, and get to know them on a more personal level.
Once we were done with our lunch, it was back to the gym for another game... the last in our pool. And, thankfully, we won both of those games. That set win put us in third place in the pool, which matched us up to play the team in 2nd place on the other pool.
And, I'll go ahead and admit right now that I was expecting that game to be our last. Playing against the team in 2nd place on the other pool meant that they'd won more games than us and when I saw that they were all young players, I just figured we'd play our game and be finished.
But, you know what happened?
We got out on the court and did indeed lose the first game. But, then something happened inside of us. We were focused, charged, and ready. And we got a WIN on the second game, meaning we had to play a third set to determine a winner. And we WON the third set!!
We knocked out the other team from the playoffs, and moved on for a spot in the top four.
Talk about excited. After having a morning of being beaten by two teams and then coming back to beat a team that had done much better than us that morning was an AMAZING feeling. So, then, we were going to be playing the team that had beat us already that morning for a spot in the semi-finals.
The score you see in the picture is from the first game of that set. WE BEAT THEM!! 25-23. Then, they managed to get a win in on the second set, meaning another third set to determine a winner. And, we started out strong, taking an early lead.
We played HARD, and I really thought we were going to take the victory, but they managed to slide in a win at the very end beating us 15-13. But, talk about a close match! It was one of those edge of your seat, anyone could win type of situations. And, I'll take that any day over a clear victory for them. We gave them a run for their money the second time around, and we really could have beaten them. It was just a little bit of bad luck on our part that we didn't.
So, the team made up of a few teachers and the principal that had gotten together one time to practice since forming the team managed to tie for 3rd place out of 8 teams from the county... several of which were made up of young, athletic, players. And, that in my mind is an AMAZING victory.
Not saying that our team wasn't young and athletic... but...well... our youngest player is in her late twenties, and the only one to be in the twenties. And in terms of athleticism, I know that I for one have not done any amount of exercise in MONTHS and even then I wouldn't consider myself "athletic". I haven't been in any kind of shape in years.
It just goes to show what a little team work and motivation can do. We may not have come out the champions of the tournament, but we walked away champions in our own right. Kinda, sorta like the underdogs getting in a chance to prove our capabilities.
And what yesterday showed me, once again, is that I really enjoy competitive team sports. I love being part of a team, I love competing, I love running around and being physical.
I'm not a young sprout, anymore, I have to understand that. And if I continue to sit on my behind and let the fat pile up on my behind, the chances of me ever dropping the weight will deteriorate to no chance. I really have to start making myself remember how much I love the thrill of exercise, and physically demanding challenges.
I set a goal a few years ago to compete in a Mud Run. Well, that goal will never happen as long as the weight on the scale keeps climbing. It's now or never.
While waiting to play, yesterday, we were able to watch a few competitive teams play that were part of a different tournament. One of the players was easily in her 50s, and to see her dive for the ball and run around with her team, and jump was amazing. And, it hit me that I will NEVER be like that if I continue to allow my weight to corrupt my physical abilities.
I could TOTALLY be that woman, in her 50s, being athletic and physical. I just need to start doing something NOW... not when I feel like it, not when I think the time is "better". Tomorrow never comes, right?
So, to recap... our team walked away champions in our own right. We overcame amazing obstacles, worked together, and managed to put a few victories under our belt. And, another victory that came out of it was reinforcing to me that I'm not passed the point of no return. I'm still able to keep up with the best of them, still able to run around, move, work up a sweat.
And that's what I need to keep doing.