Chrissie Wellington is the greatest female endurance athlete on the planet. She has won all thirteen Ironman competitions she has entered and four World Championships. She smashes through world records with a margin that is so large it resets the definition of what is possible.
Her book A Life Without Limits isn’t only a book for sports enthusiasts and triathletes. It’s written for anyone with the desire to achieve big goals. Chrissie’s story of getting to the top of the Ironman competition is one sure to inspire everyone.
It doesn’t matter where you start.
Chrissie grew up liking sports, but her focus was more on her studies.
Her unlikely rise to the top of the sporting world started in her first job. As what?
A government bureaucrat focused on international development.
Do you remember the Road Runner cartoon? Wile E. Coyote would be chasing Road Runner who would “beep, beep!” and manage to slip away. Always two steps ahead of the coyote, Road Runner just outmaneuvered him in every episode.
I remember when the coyote would run right off a cliff in pursuit. And he would dramatically just keep running on air, not realizing that he wasn’t on solid ground. Though it was predictable, you would see the sudden realization, the pause, the expression and then the inevitable fall.
As a kid, I identified with the road runner. We were outsmarting our opponent. We just laughed at that coyote. How could he be so stupid? Every single week, he repeated the same mistakes. How could you be running so fast that you don’t realize you just ran off a cliff?
I watched one of those old cartoons today, and I looked at it from a completely different perspective. Instead of identifying with the road runner, I saw the coyote with new empathy.
Regular readers of this blog know that I love to study how and why people are able to overcome obstacles and achieve success. I recently had the opportunity to meet Jennifer Pharr Davis, who is the record holder for traversing the Appalachian Trail. She hiked the Trail’s 2,175 miles in 46 days, 11 hours, and 20 minutes, becoming the first woman to hold the record.
Nothing Can Stop A Determined Mind
The list of obstacles she faced on her journey include physical and mental obstacles:
She was struck by lightning.
Her eyes were frozen shut.
She faced everything from insects to wildlife like bears and rattlesnakes.
Critics said a woman couldn’t hold the record. A hiker couldn’t best a runner.
Yesterday’s post was a celebration of the best book covers of the year. The graphic designers who create such works of art deserve recognition for their work.
As the year winds down, I’m struck by these cover images and the metaphor that they offer. With a quick glance at a book cover, we judge the content and the author. What the world sees of us is like that jacket, covering the real person inside. And just like a book cover, we are judged. Many times, it is before anyone ever took time to read our story.
We work hard to improve our external image. Whether through fashion, diet, exercise or even plastic surgery, we spend billions on physical improvements. It’s not just physical appearance either. We want our presence to be positive online. There are now various “reputation defender” services to combat unwanted reviews on the Internet. How we look to the outside world is important to most of us.