The Way of the Ikarus

Your eyes open to find the room is still dark for the sun has not yet risen.

The air is cold, and your body craves nothing more than to return to the deep dream state from which you just came. Every muscle in your body lays still as though shackled to the bed beneath you. Yet somewhere a familiar voice deep inside calls out, “I thought you wanted to win?”

With that you break free from your chains and step into the world as the sun breaks over the horizon. While the world sleeps you know that to be victorious you must do what others are unwilling or unable to do. With that you begin the day’s journey.

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You walk a path that others may not understand, but one that connects you to all those who came before. For all followers of the path understand the sacrifices that must be made to achieve greatness. The long nights and early mornings. The blood, sweat, and tears. The hard work and dedication to your sport that takes you away from your family and loved ones in the name of training and competition. The anxiety and doubts that fight their way to the surface as you strive forward. Yet as you march on you wash away the fears and self-doubt whispered by the devil on your shoulder. Choosing instead to listen to the voice inside that says you can push a little further, you can dig a little deeper, and you can work a little harder. The voice that tells you that boundaries put forth by others do not apply, for you play at another level and only you decide what the limits are. 

This is the Way of the Ikarus.

The Ikarus is the deep intrinsic drive for greatness. It’s what gets you out of bed in the morning, what makes you stay up late at night. It’s why you show up, day after day and night after night while others sit back and laugh. It’s where your mind goes when you dig deep and when you feel as though you have nothing left to give yet still fight on. It’s your second and your third wind, and the reason you push your body and your mind to the absolute limits. It’s the will to succeed, to stand on the podium in front of the world knowing that you did what others said was impossible. It’s knowing your sacrifices were not in vain and your hard work will result in victory. It’s the fire inside of you that burns brightest when challenged and will not be extinguished by the doubts of others. It’s the understanding that you are what you habitually do, and that success is a habit…not an event.

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