While I don't intend for this to turn into some kind of crazy exercising blog, I do have a follow up entry to the last one before I consider moving back into my regularly unscheduled topics.
Truth is, I don't really consider myself an athlete. However, I'd certainly make use of the adjective form of the word, something I'd never have considered less than a year ago. Athletic. Athlete-ish, if you know what I mean. One who occasionally Athls. Oh no wait, that's the noun again.
Some of you (who have yet to comment here, but with whom I've had conversations) think athletes are people who play professional football or baseball or basketball. Tennis and golf players DO NOT COUNT, according to these people.
Others think that participation in competitive sports is what sets athletes apart from the rest of us, regardless of the type of sport.
I think my own definition has to do with effort - people who participate in their sport full-on, balls-out, without holding back - those are who I think of as athletes. And by that definition, I am definitely NOT one - I'm more of a slow & steady person, rather than a full-tilt give-it-all-you-have one. Hence my preference for nice, 11 minute miles as opposed to heart- and pace-improving sprints when I run, and the joys of downhill flying on my bike rather than uphill slogs.
That said, it is true to say that less than a year ago I'd never have imagined I'd be running or biking or even swimming at any pace, much less giving consideration as to whether or not I was an athlete. It hasn't yet been a year since I signed up for my first boot camp class, thinking I simply had to start moving more than I was naturally inclined to without someone forcing the issue. Given that, who knows what changes the next year will work on me and my preconceptions? Any guesses?