Who knew something so small could change my life so big...

A hummingbird.


Well lots of hummingbirds, almost 20 of them to be exact, and they aren't really all that small and they are a bit stinky but they are the sweetest darn hummingbirds you ever will meet.

The hummingbirds I speak of don't have wings that you can see, but I have seen them soar to heights they never thought imaginable.

Oddly they do have wings in this photo
I have had the immense pleasure of assisting Coach Matt Costa and Bootcamp Bob with the Outer Banks Bootcamp Night Camp, Team Hummingbird for the last five weeks. In that time I have watched this group of amazing people grow stronger both physically and mentally. Just tonight as we were headed up the last hill of Jockey's Ridge, after putting in 3 good hard miles up and down and all around,  I ran beside one camper who was making her way up the hill and I could hear her repeating over and over "I can do this, I am doing this, I can do this, I am doing this". I know this probably doesn't mean that much just reading this but just a few short weeks ago I was running by this same lady and she was repeating over and over "I can't do this, I can't do this". That my friends is AMAZING PROGRESS!




Our time together as the Hummingbirds is quickly drawing to a close and next Wednesday as the sun sets over the Outer Banks we will meet one final time for graduation. I look forward to being there as so many of them receive their black bands to wear with the pride of a job well done. My hope for this team is that they continue this journey on with the next Night Camp that starts the following Monday evening with Coach Jay Bowman. The first step has been made, and as they say, that is the one that is the hardest and I know in my heart and soul that this group of individuals has what it takes to carry on and follow their dreams to meet their goals.

ouch.
I can't express to each of them enough how incredibly proud I am of the work I have seen them put in, I have seen blood (ok that was mine where sand spurs got stuck in my leg, how that happens I do not know, considering I was wearing shorts!), sweat (please see above where I mentioned stinky) and a few tears (of joy and pain). I do have something else I would like this team to know, I have heard over and over how much I have inspired and encouraged them from different members, the truth of the matter is I feel that they have given me much more than I could ever give them. They have given me a chance to give back, a chance to share my experiences and stories of my journey and have it mean something other than just meeting my own personal goals, they all have given me a gift that is truly priceless and I love each of them for it. We have two more nights together as a team and I am looking forward to sharing those last moments with them making memories that no one can ever take away. 

I could go on and on about this team and their commitment, from the members that showed up ill and continued to push through, those with shin splints so bad they could hardly move but still continued, to those that had medical procedures and didn't give up, those that had incredibly physical manual labor jobs that came and never quit, but I will close instead with this finally comment.

HUMMINGBIRDS YOU OWNED IT!
15.23.14.9.20.
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