Posted by: altmike | November 4, 2012

Inspiration: Oscar “Blade Runner” Pistorius

If there is anyone who has ever thought they have been dealt a bad hand in life and feels like giving up needs to learn about a man named Oscar Pistorius. Pistorius is a South Africa native and running champion. He was born with a condition called fibular hemimelia, which is a congenital defect of the fibula which he had in both legs. When he was 11 months old he had both of his legs amputated just below the knee. Growing up he didn’t sit around on and let this limit him, no, when he was 11 years old he started playing rugby as well as tennis and water polo. After an injury stopped his rugby career in 2003 he was introduced to running and was hooked from then on.

He was fitted for a set of prosthetic legs in Africa that weren’t durable enough, so he was outfitted for a pair of blades from an American prosthetist . He began running competitively running in 2005 and in 2006 he won gold at the Paralympics in the 100, 200 and 400 meter event, breaking the 200 world record with a time of 21.58 seconds. With some controversy surrounding the prosthetic blades, some question whether it was an unfair advantage or not compared to other runners with both legs. It was later ruled that it wasn’t and that he would be allowed to try to qualify for the 2008 Olympics. He was unable to qualify for the South African team because he did not have adequate times. He then participated and qualified for the 2008 Paralympics where he set record times in the 100, 200, and 400 meter races. He didn’t quit after not qualifying for the Olympics though, he tried again in 2012 and made it. He became the first amputee runner to compete in the Olympic Games and ran in the 400 and 4X400 meter relay. He ended up taking 8th overall in both races but made it to the finals none the less.

Pistorius is another person that I have immense respect for, for his courage and persistence to overcome obstacles that stood in his way. His personal motto is “You’re not disabled by the disabilities you have, you are able by the abilities you have.” We should all take this motto to heart and realize that we have to start using the abilities that we have to the fullest.  If Pistorius can overcome the obstacle of having no legs and compete in the Olympics with hard work and dedication then we all need to look ourselves in the mirror and ask ourselves in the mirror and answer my one question… “What’s your excuse?”

Can’t is not an Excuse

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