Noble, Ex-Marine Finds New Purpose in College Football

When is it time to stop challenging yourself? For Nathan Noble, a 29 year old ex-marine, those days aren’t in sight. He has lived an accomplished life and now, he tries something new, and succeeds. Noble gets to walk on to Wyoming’s College Football team as the kicker. He has made a name for himself and is more than ready to be somebody that people depend on again, he is ready for this challenge.

I love stories like this, stories of inspiration, of people who take chances and succeed. I don’t think there is a need to ever stop challenging yourself, however routine or comfortable your life gets. Whether it be in health, academics, fitness, cooking, there’s always something more to learn or try out there. My next Challenge? Kickboxing twice a week.

The other reason I loved this story, the main reason, was that it reminds me of my favorite quarterback: Brandon Weeden. He too, was a little bit older and had experienced more than your average college student, being that he used to play professional baseball. Weeden came back to Oklahoma State to play football, ignored all the comments people made about his age, and rocked it. Now he plays for the Cleveland Browns, and new coach, Rob Chudzinski says it may be “premature” to call Weeden the starter in 2013 after his not so perfect rookie season. Bad call, Rob. You’re asking for a miracle to turn your team around, but you need Weeden to get there.

Brandon Weeden Photo by Erik Drost/Flickr

Brandon Weeden Photo by Erik Drost/Flickr

An inspirational cross-country journey

Now, just the fact that Ken Ilgunas set out to travel from Alberta, Canada to the Gulf Shores of Texas is incredibly impressive to me. Personally, I would have tried to take a more scenic route, but that would defeat his purpose. Did I mention he has been doing this on foot? Being an adventurer myself, I would love to think that maybe one day when I’m stuck between jobs or just want to try something new I could take on a journey like this one, and hopefully learn about this country I live in, in a way I’ve never seen it before, like Ken did.

His goal: to conquer the XL Pipeline, and talk to numerous people about their feelings towards such a large task. The XL pipeline was going to be the route that TransCanada, a major oil and gas company in Canada, took to make a pipeline from the Tar Sands of Alberta to the Gulf of Texas, where the Tar Sands would be given to oil refineries. The people of TransCanada, and some of the people Ken talked to along the way thought this would be a great way to possibly a boost in the economy and a way to get oil and a great source of jobs. Others, who knew more about the destruction and environmental hazards of Tar Sands, strongly opposed this idea. They then took it upon themselves to make a stand and fight back, because all TransCanada needed was the ok from President Obama. As he travels, Ken gets to be a part of one of these rallies, and experiences some true passion from people who would no doubt be negatively affected by this Pipeline. It is great to see America standing up for themselves, and this time, it pays off. President Obama does not approve the building of the XL pipeline. But the peaceful protesters need to keep their guard up, because it looks like TransCanada may be re-applying. This fight may not be over.

Stories like this always excite me, trying something new and finding something great. One day, I want to travel like this, probably not as far, and probably with more than one pair of shoes. This story reminds me of a really good book I read this year, Wild, by Cheryl Strayed. I think today might be a great day for me to dust off my hiking boots and go for a little adventure, maybe I’ll learn something about the community I live in, or maybe I’ll learn something about myself. Either way, I’ll get to explore the outdoors and get in touch with nature.

A view from a hike at Glacier National Park Photo By: Austin Yoder

A view from a hike at Glacier National Park Photo By: Austin Yoder