Woke up without an alarm–always a beautiful thing! Went on a loosen run and enjoyed the Colorado morning air. Looking at the mountain landscape never gets old. They are beautiful–almost look fake they are so majestic just set perfectly in the distance. I see the incline going up Pike’s Peak everyday. I hope to do it while I’m here, but I don’t know if it will fit in the schedule. If not this trip, then the next one for sure! It looks like a great challenge. How about doing repeats on that beast some time? Now there’s an idea!
After breakfast we headed to the classroom for a running session with Coach Bobby McGee. Bobby has coached an Olympian in every Olympiad (summer Games) since ’92. He works with marathoners, sprinters, triathletes at the ITU level to the Ironman distance…you name it, if it involves running, Bobby is there. He combines a passion for science, efficiency and sport and puts them altogether to make the human body as fast as possible on land. After working with Bobby, many athletes say he makes running “magical.”
In the classroom we covered the science behind the run involving technique, form and training. He nailed home the point that many athletes (novice and professionals) look at running as a power sport when it is really a sport of grace and rhythm. He showed us many photos and video footage driving this point home. He also critiqued many elite runners’ form pointing out flaws in their technique and areas they could improve upon. Going back to yesterday: it’s never too late to learn. Even the pros have areas for improvement that will make them even faster.
He also addressed the famous “OTB”–”off the bike” run. When training for the run in the sport of triathlon, you have to approach it somewhat differently. You are doing a 10k after a mile swim and 25mile bike–this is much different than doing an open road race where your legs are fresh. If anything, you must have better mechanics and efficiency as a runner-triathlete because that is the only way you will be able to run fast and maintain that speed OTB for a 10k. Mechanics and form are keys to success at the sport! Going back to yesterday: it’s in the details where champions are made!
After the classroom we headed out to practice drills, muscle activation techniques and put the classroom knowledge to work. Even after just four short hours with Bobby, I could feel an improvement in my running and a better sense of body awareness. He does work “magic” for those willing to learn and change old habits.
It’s working with coaches like Bobby and Dr. G (swim guru from yesterday) that make me realize just how much a team effort is behind all great athletes. It takes a village to maximize your potential. It takes a village to put athletes on the Olympic podium. No great athlete makes it alone. In fact, no really successful person goes at it alone. Just think of the friends, family, coworkers, mentors, coaches and teachers who have helped you get to where you are today. Now the question is: who are you helping? As Zig Zigler says: “You can get what you want by helping others get what they want.” Pay it forward. Pass it on. Invest in someone’s life. Invest in someone’s dream. I believe great coaches do what they do because they love seeing dreams realized. To all my coaches and support team, THANK YOU!
After a quick lunch we were back in the classroom for sport psychology with Coach Bobby. He called the talk “Owning Your Own Ability.” He covered self talk; mental, emotional and physical energies; harnessing anxiety and fear; optimal performance; racing in adverse conditions and more. One of my favorite parts from this lecture was about consistency. He said:
the “overnight successes” are the people that consistently show up for 5, 10 and 15 years.
Think about that! That’s so true. Consistency plays a huge factor in success. Of course it’s not just showing up and going through the motions mindless. As my friend Josh Davis says: “practice doesn’t make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect.” You can’t just show up and tune out. But if you consistently show up ready to work, ready to learn, wanting to improve and engage your mind and body in what you are doing in the moment–do that consistently day in and day out not for a month, not 6 months, but years. And years turns into 5 and 5 into a decade and on and on–you have a recipe for success.
This does not just apply to sports. This is a life principle. Life takes hard work, diligence and practice. It comes with failure and learning from those setbacks so that you can do it differently down the line. As I remind myself: nobody said this (i.e. sport, life, marriage, family, living on a budget, continuing education…) was going to be easy. If it were, everyone would be doing it. Life isn’t easy. We are bound to have misfortune, twists, turns, heartache and pain. But the difference is made when you choose to get back up after you stumble, dust yourself off and keep going.
The most successful people are those that are consistent. Consistent to their beliefs, values and morals. Stick to your principles, “show up” everyday and watch some of your dreams turn into realities. Surround yourself with cheerleaders, but also critics to help you improve. Write down your goals, assemble your support team, and “show up!” Greatness awaits!
Later in the afternoon I went on a run, did a strength session, grabbed dinner, was back in the classroom for some Trigger Point therapy work, talked triathlon with some fellow athletes, and now I’m ready to call it a day. So that’s it for day 10 — another full day in training heaven.