"The faster I get, the more I think I suck."

I mentioned that to Boris (Blake) the other day. I
suppose on the surface I sound like an insecure
teenager (or adult for that matter) searching for
reassurance. That isn't/wasn't my intention.

The above quote came from me joking around a bit and
is actually said out of respect for the athletes that
are (much) faster than myself.

In 2002 I took a summer internship with Inside
Communications (Publishers of Inside Tri, Velonews,
Ski Racing, and all Velopress books) in Boulder,
Colorado. Before arriving I think I had come to a
point where I felt I had it all "figured out." Pretty
funny in hindsight really. I came from Texas where AG
and overall placings were fairly decent for me. I got
to Boulder and had my ass handed to me around every
corner. Even the slow lanes at Masters and the
recovery rides were too much for me to handle.

I like to think that I rarely speak in a cocky tone
(unless you are close to me) as it relates to
triathlon, but I imagine my self-love thoughts peaked
before arriving in Boulder that summer. Since then I
have learned (well, sort of learned) what it takes to
knock off each minute of an Ironman finish. Like
losing weight, the initial pounds fall quickly, but
the final ones take some (ok, a lot) of work. Every
year of training has topped the previous one, both in
terms of intensity and volume, and yet, the road is
still long.

Soooooo, as the years go by, I start to have more and
more appreciation for what the top guys and gals in
this sport (or any sport) have had to go through to
get to the top. I often think about Dick Jochums when
I think about this (read "Gold in the Water" for the

I can see him standing over me on the pool deck.
Metaphorically, I just finish a main set that took
five and half years (or in some ways, all my life). He
looks down at me and says:

"Good Job."

I start to pat myself on the back and he says...

"Now do it again. Only this time, do it with a little

Success comes to those who stick with it.


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