I’ve never been a fan of race medals. While they are symbolic of accomplishment in the moment and fun to wear after a race, mine usually sit in a pile somewhere until they end up in my plastic ‘medals bin’. What to do with your finisher medals? A lot of wasted materials and not really recyclable. Maybe race directors should stop handing them out. At least that is how I’ve felt … up until now.
The other day I was tidying up in the spare room and sitting on the desk were my medals from last year. As my hand reached out to scoop up the medals and put them in the bin, my fingers landed on the Muskoka 70.3 (half Ironman triathlon) medal. Right beside it was a page out of an old calendar that said “anything is possible.” I grinned. I call myself a possibilitarian so it’s no surprise to me that I kept that old calendar page. Also in the pile is my first 1st place medal for my age group at the local triathlon and two 3rd place medals from two other triathlons. Wow. Podium three weeks in a row. And 2nd place in my age group at the Bahamas Marathon in January. Plus finisher’s medals from various other races.
I’m looking at these medals as I write this post and wondering what to do with them? What do they really represent to me beyond the finish line? A soft smile of pride begins to glow inside. Not so much about the accomplishment – although I am proud of that – but more about my courage to try. To keep taking on new challenges. The medals aren’t just about the finish line. More importantly perhaps, they are about the start line. And about my journey to get there. They remind me to be courageous in all aspects of my life. To be wildly fascinated about what’s possible. To know that I can succeed at whatever I take on. At any age or stage of my life. That with determination, commitment and willingness to learn I can figure out how to get where I want to go.
I've decided to call them my 'more-in-me' medals. Every one of them helped me discover some new aspect of myself. To overcome challenges and earn success. These medals – and all the ones before them – are what inspired me to start the More-In-Me Movement. I still have more-in-me and I know you have more in you too! And you don’t have to run a marathon or complete a triathlon to find it. Getting moving and setting a physical movement goal is a great way to get your body to lead you to discovering a version of your ‘more-in-me’.
Spring has arrived. The new season is upon us. These medals have earned their rightful place in my 'more-in-me’ bin, as I’m now going to call it. Whenever I need a dose of courage or boost of confidence, I can simply open the bin and see all these bright, colourful, shiny reminders of what’s possible.
It reminds me I have another ‘bin’ of sorts that captures a different aspect of my journey to more-in-me – a resealable plastic bag with all my business cards over the years showing my evolution and progress, my ID badges from schools and jobs in various locations, my old passports with all the stamps from far-away places. Another ‘bin’ to explore on another day.
What represents your ‘more-in-me’ medals? Do you have a ‘more-in-me’ bin? What does your bin look like? What do you keep in it? What items have you forgotten to include in there? Go have a peek in it. Savor the moment. See what possibilities emerge for you. What start lines are waiting for you?