Staying in the fight

I turned 45 a few weeks ago, a big enough number to make me pause and think. I’ve also had to stop road running in the past few years (I can still run short distances on a treadmill) because of a recurring injury that I can’t seem to kick.

I took up swimming a few years back as a partial backfill for my lost running miles, and while I haven’t gotten much faster in the pool I no longer feel like I’m going to drown halfway through my workout. Most days I share the pool with at least one other swimmer, a guy named Bob.

Bob is 81 years old and still competes as a Master. He swims four events in competition, including the butterfly. Last weekend Bob raced again and was the only guy in his age class in the pool. The crowd at the swim meet gave him a standing ovation when he finished his race.

I spend my days with twenty- and thirty-something entrepreneurs who are all in a hurry to change the world. I love their energy, and I share their impatience for impact and achievement.

But every time I see Bob down at in the pool grinding through his workout I’m reminded how many of life’s achievements are won simply by having the grit and persistence to stay in the game.

Thanks, Bob, for the weekly reminder: yes, be on fire; but also, never quit.