“F” words no athlete should be afraid of…

I just crossed the finish line of a VERY FULL and BUSY week…teaching 8th grader science all day followed by parent teacher conferences until 7 pm Monday-Wednesday, followed by another round of parent teacher conferences Thursday morning until noon (54 conferences in all…less than half of my students).  My conversations with parents and students, sparked my thoughts about “failure.”  I shared my view of failure with some parents and students…

You have only failed if you didn’t learn something along the way and you stopped trying to get better.


My view of failure doesn’t just apply to 8th grade science, but to life and sport.  As an athlete, there are some very prominent “F” words that show up from time to time.  I do my best to change my thinking from the negative connotation that these “F” words can have to a much more positive outlook when they appear.  How can these “F” words help me be a better athlete?!?!?

Fear…Many people have anxiety when they allow fear to enter their domain.  However, fear doesn’t seem to cause me anxiety.  I view fear as a challenge for me to become better.  When I stop and look fear head on, I become strong, courageous, confident, powerful and in control of my domain.

Failure…For me, fear and failure can go hand-in-hand.  On race day, I sometimes experience the “fear of failure,” so I have to keep reminding myself of the following:  as long as I learn something and keep trying to become better, I am not failing.


Frustration…I only become frustrated when I don’t meet the expectations I have set for myself.  I am learning to adjust these expectations to help reduce the amount of frustration that I feel, but for a very goal-oriented person with high standards, adjusting expectations can be a challenge.  Luckily I have never been one to shy away from a challenge 🙂

What negative “F” words do you encounter that you are trying to twist into a positive???

5 thoughts on ““F” words no athlete should be afraid of…

  1. Freakouts. Definitely in open water–so I start every triathlon by bobbing my head under water to become comfortable. So I fear the rolling starts where I will not get a chance to do that 😦

    1. Just keep practicing in open water Sandra!! The more you practice, the more comfortable you’ll become and the “freak outs” will be fewer and farther between. 🙂

      1. As long as I can bob, I have no freak outs. . . but they just went to a rolling start in my favorite tri–that eliminates my opportunity for bobbing . We shall see. (I need to do it JUST before my swim, not minutes before)

  2. Ahhh, freakout is my F word. I had one this season, and the swim went terrible. But, after some positive self-talk, I salvaged the bike+run and had a fun race! LOVE your perspective on fear! And, the new blog looks fantastic! Great colors and layout! Fun! 🙂

    1. Thanks Erin!! Freakouts are another nasty “F” word we need to probably eliminate from our vocabulary, but sometimes it just happens and we feed into it. The key is to recognize it and talk oneself out of the freakout and into something more positive…sometimes it’s easier said than done. 😉

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