I’m an avid reader. I didn’t use to be, it’s something I kind of had to force myself to do, because as a the proverbial fat kid — I’d much prefer the movie over the book … for obvious reasons. The desire really came from watching my Grandma almost always having her nose in a book. So, now, for at least the past 4-5 years I always have a book on my nightstand.
I don’t really have a preference — I just kind of like whatever interests me. How’s that for vagueness? I do tend to love biographies, historical nonfiction and pretty much anything about WWII. Give me a good story — and I’m hooked for the next couple of weeks.
Walt Disney, George Washington, Joseph Smith, Shaquille O’Neal, Jesse Owens, Bart Yasso, Abraham Lincoln, Michael Jordan, William Wilberforce, Louis Zamperini and Lorenzo Snow — to name a few — have crossed my nightstand. There’s always something you can learn from each story regardless of background, beliefs or profession. That’s another thing I learned from my Grandma.
One biography I’ve been waiting for the past couple of months is that of Cory Reese’s book. Odds are if you’ve ran in Utah, especially out on the trails, you’ve heard of Cory. You either know him as Fast Cory, the runner obsessed with Hostess baked goods, or possibly that guy who once ran the St. George Marathon back to back to back or that runner who jumps in all of his pictures.
And, if you’ve actually had the privilege to meet Cory in person, he’s one of the kindest, thoughtful and inspiring people you will know. And, quite honestly, he’s someone I look up to — his charism, writing and wit speaks to me. How can you not feel better about yourself after reading one of race reports? And, how do you NOT feel inspired to hit the trails with all his breathtaking photography and stories?
Anyways — I preordered my book and got it in the mail last Saturday. I wanted to dive right into it, but being the same day as my marathon I couldn’t stay awake long enough to get through the title page. So, I waited until the next day to dive in — and I haven’t been disappointed. Purely inspired — and motivated.
I wouldn’t call this a book review — because I am still reading it. And, please don’t ask me to do a book report — I really sucked at those growing up. But, there were a few things I really, really wanted to share about Cory’s book and story.
Don’t worry, I’m not going spoil it for you. Well, not entirely. There’s a video of Steve Harvey that Cory references in his book that, I kid you not, had two other people reference in the past couple of weeks. It’s basically a video of Steve Harvey “preaching” to the audience after a taping of Family Feud.
Give it a listen before I share a few more thoughts …
You gotta jump.
You gotta jump.
You gotta jump.
I’ve listened to this video a number of times and each time, I come away with the thought — you gotta jump. You’ve got to put faith in that parachute opening so you can soar.
And, I really loved the thoughts that Cory shared in his book about this video and message (again, not going to spoil the book — go read it yourself). I love the symbolism behind it in relation to Cory’s jumping pictures — and story. He’s had to take that jump a number of times into an unknown.
It really made me think about my journey. When I made the decision to “jump” on November 11, 2009 (yes, I remember the exact date), I did so not knowing what to expect. I jumped because where I was standing was getting me nowhere towards a future I wanted. I accepted the unknown and more importantly I accepted failure.
How many of us don’t jump because we’re afraid of failure? Risk can be frightening. Nobody wants to fail. But, if we’re going to achieve the impossible we’ve got to accept the consequences — good or bad. There is no growth when we play it safe.
As I am reading Cory’s book and pondering about these thoughts — I can’t shake the question — “Am I jumping enough?” Am I taking the necessary risks that will get me where I want to be? Am I not trusting my parachute? Am I not trusting my God enough?
While I feel like I’ve jumped a lot in the past five plus years — I can’t help but think — I can jump more.
I am not sure what that exactly means right now. I just know I’ve got to prepare myself for a jump. I’ve got to prepare the consequences and embrace it. And wherever I jump — it will be towards my goals, dreams and desires.
If you haven’t picked up Cory’s book, “Nowhere Near First” yet do so! You can buy it here on Amazon.com.
Thanks for inspiring so many of us to jump, Cory. I can’t wait to finish your book, and maybe — just maybe — you might get a book report out of me. And, if anything you might have given me reason to jump to finish my book.