Current Over-Achievers, Has Beens and Never Was’s

10352376_10203416230500928_4098591042589115485_nAs a life-long lover of athletic competition, I admire anyone who competes at any level with any level of success. It is this competition which helps develop us into the people we become. For me, there are three categories where athletic competitors fall. First...the Never Was’s. You’ve heard the old saying that “it’s better to be a “has been” than a “never was.” The “never was” is a person who went through the motions of competition, while not really competing. Their abilities are not questioned, but their level of engagement can be. Just to be on the team was important enough for these folks, but they chose not to give too much of themselves.

The largest category is filled with former athletes like me....has beens. Men or women who competed at high levels throughout high school and college with memorable accomplishments along the way. However for a myriad of reasons, we don’t compete athletically anymore. We live with past accomplishments and are satisfied with current professional achievements.

Then there are the Current Over-Achievers. Like the Has Beens, they are likely former high school or college athletes, but they are still looking for the adrenaline rush of competition. It is this category that I have utmost respect for and is the category my wife Frances has great standing.

She would never let anyone know her accomplishments, but they’ve become so blatantly obvious in recent years that I will call attention. At 52, she is one of the most prolific North Carolinian swimmers and has become recognized as one the strongest International swimmers in her age group.

Earlier this month, Frances competed in the FINA Masters International Games in Montreal. In her 9 swims, she broke 5 NC records, 7 top 10 International finishes and 3rd place finish in her best event...the 50 backstroke. These accomplishments added to her other 4 state records, 4 national relay records and 1 world record as a part of the 200 Medley Relay a few years ago. Add these achievements to her 1st place finish in her age group in the famous San Francisco “Escape From Alcatraz” swim over the last two years and yes....you have a Current Over Achiever.

I admire all of you that are pushing your bodies and your minds to new levels in whatever the sport may be. To all of you half and full marathoners, cyclists, triathletes and swimmers competing at high levels, hats off to your hard work. From all of us Has Beens and Never Was’s....a bow to your hard work and successes.

• The opinions in this commentary express the views of the author and in no way represents the views of LPL Financial. The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.