Squad Goals. The concept of “team” has always been very important to me. I think this desire for being on a team started when I was young, watching my parents who were coaches. And I always loved being on teams while I was growing up. From what I remember, even our neighborhood felt like “squad goals”. I place a lot of value on the people that I am lucky enough to call friends and I feel like “team” helps me stay grounded. Being on a team fulfills me and my teammates enrich my life. I always want to be a valued member of a team and even though that can lead to disappointment sometimes, it has been a motivating and guiding factor in the choices that I’ve made in my life.

As we get older and move into the “real world”, our teammates and goals tend to change. We don’t always have that built-in camaraderie that we may have experienced in our younger days with sports and clubs and other activities. I’ve come to realize that my team, my people, my squad are a big reason I get up and go every day. My family is my #1 team and I’ve been pretty lucky in that sense. One of the greatest surprises for me is that my family team not only includes Charlie, Alex and Ryan, but now I feel like I did when I was a kid and I’ve rekindled close friendships with my cousins and their kids, too.

Back in the day…

I am happy the swim friends I made when I was young are now my grown-up friends. We chat about our crazy teenage boys, we help each other through challenges in our personal lives, and sometimes our relationships go on without the teammate who brought us together in the first place. Life is amazing! There is something really cool about touching base with your friend for a quick 3-hour cup of coffee on your vacation because you just don’t want to miss the face to face time. 😉

I love the people that have helped me grow up and loved me through all the messy parts of life. And now, in our new hometown, we are creating our new squad and our new teammates. I try not to exaggerate or overstate the value it has in my life, but Crossfit has been the key to me feeling like I’m on a team in this new place. I’m so happy when I go to the box. I love getting to know my “squad”. I love it that we can help each other in our personal journeys but also in our Crossfit and health journeys, too. My original squad my have just started with my brother and then my neighbors but now it includes amazing people from all walks of life that help me stay connected.

When I swam my last race as a Wildcat, I cried. A lot. I had a really hard time getting my emotions under control because I thought my time with a team was over. I am happy to say that is not the case at all! When you find the right team, you’ll know. Your squad will be there to celebrate your victories. Your squad will be there in your tough moments. Your squad will love your family and you will love their family. And lo and behold…you just got yourself a team again and it’s awesome. Life is messy and hard and then it’s not and even if you only have one teammate to share the ride with, it is worth it. I found some of the best people on my Crossfit journey. My team, my “squad”. I’m still on a great team full of people I love.

PS…yeah, that’s me, cheesin’ in the second row. I know you’re surprised.