Embrace the Olympic spirit--strive for your personal best

  • Published
  • By Col. Greg Touhill
  • 81st Training Wing commander
Will you be watching the Olympics? What a fantastic spectacle of sport and national pride as the world's greatest athletes compete to earn the medals that distinguish them as the Olympic champions! 

Not many of us have the very rare combination of athletic skill, discipline, and training that would allow us to compete at such a high level of athletic competition yet, as Airmen, we do have something even more powerful that makes us world-class ... our Air Force core values, our great Air Force training, and our great wingmen! 

All of us have the potential to be the best at what we do. 

Take fitness and warrior preparation, for example. I'm certainly not going to set any Olympic records in my fitness test, but I'm going to try to improve and set a personal best next year. How about you? Make a commitment to yourself and follow through. Now's the time to start training! 

How about on the job? Are you known as "the best in the business"? Do you have that great customer service attitude that marks you as a champion and attracts other people because you are the best? If not, why not? You can do it! Now's the time to start training to get there! 

How about off-duty? Are you the best spouse, parent, friend, sibling, child, or (fill-in-the-blank) you can be? Are there things you can improve? Taking time to assess where you stand and where you want to be is the first step in putting together a great life plan that can yield Olympic-size rewards. 

Frankly, while we have some great athletes here at Keesler, I'd be pleasantly surprised to see any of you on the Olympic podium receiving a medal. That said, however, I'm blessed to have stood at attention while many of you have stood on a different platform and received other medals of note that mark you as true champions in the defense of our nation. The medals your nation gives you in thanks for your service to your fellow Americans are precious in a way that Olympic medals can't come close to. The medals our nation presents represent the thanks of 300 million people for your selfless sacrifice, your devotion to duty, and your constant striving to be the best in the world. 

The Olympic competition is an inspirational time, when people around the world marvel at the incredible feats of athletic prowess that mark Olympic champions. You have what it takes to be a champion too. One of our greatest Olympic champions, Jesse Owens, said, "Find the good. It's all around you. Find it, showcase it and you'll start believing in it." I believe in YOU ... strive to be a champion in all you do!