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

The Size Of Your Heart Is the Only Useful Measurement

size of the heart is all that matters

I can only imagine what the little guy in green thought when he met his opponent. The difference in size is astonishing.

As an athlete, I spend a lot of time thinking about size—how I wish my thighs were smaller, my biceps were bigger, my stride was longer. But that’s not really what matters. Hard work and heart matter. Trying your best matters.

When the gun went off, the runner in green pumped his arms and ran with gusto—his feet spring-boarding off pavement two to three times for every footfall his opponent took. It was a surprisingly close race. And even though the other runner nipped him at the line, it was clear that the runner in green had run his very big heart out.

I left Saturday’s games sunburned and sweaty, but with a camera full of awesome images and a new perspective on my upcoming Ironman. My new Ironman goal isn’t to beat my previous time or to place in my age group—it’s to channel these athletes as much as I can throughout the day. I promise to only worry about my own performance, to help others along the way and to—most importantly—celebrate my success in finishing, no matter what happens on course. Oh, and that gal cheering obnoxiously at the start line? That will be me.