Want to be a Better Athlete? Watch Your Local Special Olympics

When Things Go Wrong, Let Others Help

let others help

Six notes from the end of the National Anthem—when the singer climbed up the scale to the glass-shattering “Land of the Free” note—the microphone died. Not even half a beat later, the entire crowd came to the rescue, belting out the last line. Three hundred-plus people somehow knew exactly what to do and when to do it.

Too often I think of endurance sports as a personal conquest. It’s me versus the mile markers. Me versus my self-doubt. Me versus my love of cake. If something goes wrong along the way I assume it’s my responsibility to fix it.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Sure, no one can carry me across the finish line, but it’s okay to ask for help when I need it—from friends, coaches, family, even the strangers cheering on the sideline. Likewise, if I see someone else struggling, I should never be afraid to chime in—be it with an encouraging word or with the last few notes of our country’s most beloved song.