Several years ago I was invited to a charitable conference called the Glocal Forum. The forum was a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion of international intercity relations in pursuit of a new balance between global and local forces. At the conference I met a man who was approachable, genuine, handsome, charismatic, giving, down-to-earth, intelligent, and witty. He had introduced himself solely as “Tim”, so I had no idea the weight his full name carried. I just new I really liked his character and felt that I would buy ice from him in Antarctica if he said it was for a good cause. I soon found out why I thought so highly of this man named “Tim".
(Story excerpt from When Turtles Fly: Secrets of Successful People Who Know How to Stick Their Necks Out)
Some of the greatest moments in sports are those defined by the supreme effort put forth by competitors who take every personal risk imaginable to advance the cause, who empty themselves of all energy and capacity, and then somehow find a reservoir of will that propels them beyond fatigue, pain, fear or exhaustion to achieve more than anyone ever thought possible.
Vince Lombardi captured the popular notion of this type of effort—of what it means to “leave everything on the field”—when he said, “I firmly believe that any man's finest hour, the greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle—victorious.”
The best known examples of this type of effort are held out as nearly superhuman feats. Michael Jordan, drained and dehydrated with severe flu, carrying his team to victory in a crucial game five of the ‘97 NBA Finals. Kerri Strug, unable to walk due to torn tendons in her ankle, sealing gold for Team U.S.A. in gymnastics with an unforgettably daring vault and landing at the Atlanta Olympics. Tiger Woods, playing with a bum knee and a broken leg, willing his way to win a sudden death playoff to take the 2008 U.S. Open.