My entire life has revolved around sports. If you ask anyone close to me, whether that be family or friends, they will probably say that I have a crazy sports obsession. For the first 18 years of my life, my daily routine after school was watching SportsCenter and other ESPN shows as I ate afternoon snacks and did my homework, then going to my practices or games.
When I wasn’t watching or playing sports, I was researching: finding stats and understanding sports and their athletes more. I started playing soccer when I was three and still play it to this day; I played baseball and football until I was 12, and I casually play basketball and lacrosse with my friends. I have played in games and tournaments in over ten different states along the East Coast, as well as been blessed with the opportunity to play soccer internationally in Italy and the Philippines. Physically, sports have helped me not to look like a scrawny frail person who can go flying with the wind at any moment.
Running for hours almost every day has not given me the stamina it should, but it allows me not to feel sore or tired after a couple days of running. And for a lot of people, they think sports only help your physical strength and make you more active when you get older, but for me, sports have helped me with the mental side of my body exponentially more than my physical side.
Sports have given me such a strong and motivating mentality and have given me the confidence to do anything I put my mind to. That constant running and being pushed to the limit allows me to not feel overwhelmed when I have deadlines to meet with assignments because, in my mind, I have been through much worse. I credit the mentality I have of meeting those deadlines and being on time for class, meetings, or interviews to sports because if I was late for a game or practice, there would be consequences.
If I missed an assignment or any important meetings or classes, I knew there would be bigger consequences than missing a sports event. I have been a part of teams that have finished last place, lost in tournament finals, and lost in the most embarrassing ways, and most of the time, we end up on top the next time we go against those same teams.
With that being said, sports have also taught me that there will be times when you will get knocked down, whether it’s getting a bad grade on a project or having a tough time completing a task (like figuring out what to write for this editorial), but it’s about how you recover and get back up.
Most importantly, sports have given me lifelong relationships and memories I will never forget, like going on endless road trips and losing tough games but then going on to win championships. Those are moments that always stay with you and make you feel nostalgic when you talk about them with the people you experienced them with.