The Mercy Rule – CrossFit Cerberus
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The Mercy Rule


The Mercy Rule

This is a CrossFit post.  And it’s a sports post.  And it’s a life post.  It applies to just about everything, depending on how you walk through this world.  I’ve always been proud to be part of Coach Carl’s CrossFit Cerberus family, because of what they stand for as a whole.  But what I saw this weekend on the soccer field made me proud to be a team mom, too.

Kickin' Skills

And it goes even further than that.  We’ve been blessed in our lives to have had coaches for our kids who instill not only kickass skills, but also overall badassery in life.  I think it’s the badassery in life skills that’s going to carry them through.  Sure, they’ll be healthy and strong; and every one of my kids could out-WOD me on their worst days…but even better than that is the fact that they’ll be pretty damn decent humans, thanks to the extra help from extraordinary people who’ve participated in their lives.

Soccer Playoffs

Long story short, my son is on a rec soccer team, and we’ve NEVER won a tournament.  But this season was all about the Bulldogs.  (Go, team!)  Our boys were set to win the fourth game in a row, wrapping up the weekend-long tournament and taking the overall win.  The other team had already added an extra player to even things out (the mercy rule), and we could see our boys were maybe, just maybe, easing up just a bit.  But what happened in the second half of the game is what dropped my jaw.

As with any team, there are a few standout players; and there are a few who are still learning and catching up on skills.  The entire second half, the team leaders—the ones who typically lead the pack and kick the goals—did something different…all on their own.  They widened their lanes, making room for the kids who hadn’t yet scored goals that season, and defended them—protecting them all the way to the net.  They made it possible for their teammates to score the goals they’d worked so hard for all season long.  In the end, every kid on that team scored a goal, and they all celebrated together.

Now, I know not every kid gets the gold medal every time.  And we can’t all get a trophy for trying.  However, in a 9- and 10-year-old rec soccer league, this did something pretty important for the boys who were able to score goals.  It gave them encouragement.  And it let them know their entire team was behind them, helping them get it right.

The best part about the whole thing was this: No one told those kids they had to be nice to their teammates.  No one told them to encourage them or give them a chance to make the shot.  They just did it.

They did it because for several seasons, they have been coached by someone who has instilled the idea of a TEAM, of respecting and helping one another.  And that was their very own way of building up their teammates.

Life Playoffs

Every time I see a post from the Cerberus family—an athlete encouraging another athlete…or giving a shout-out about some awesome PR someone else has set…or even giving a boxmate a friendly razzing about not showing up—it reminds me we’re part of something bigger than ourselves.

And every time I see a CrossFit post about an athlete that’s overcome adversity to kick some serious ass in the box, it reminds me that we’re all rooting for each other.

And every time there’s a memorial WOD, a partner WOD, or even a WOD an athlete finishes alongside another athlete to lend some extra inspiration, it reminds me we’re in this whole big thing together.

I’m glad my kids have had amazing coaches in their lives (Ahem, my girls have been with Coach Carl since they wore ruffles and bows, and I’m thankful for that!).  And I’m glad I’ve been able to learn all the life lessons I’ve learned in the box—and from my kids’ coaches—as well.

Some of our greatest lessons come from the kiddos, the coaches, and our amazing boxmates.  It’s time to win some life playoffs, help others score a few goals, and get through the game together!

Oh yeah, and go pick up something heavy in the process.

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