Planning my future.....
I apologise for the lack of blogging while I've been taking my time sorting my life out, finding the next steps! If I'd written a blog in the past few weeks it would probably have been pretty sour and depressing. I have to say the past month has probably ranked as one of roughest in my career so far. I was really unmotivated and lacked all belief once the Olympic dream had sailed and I was definitely struggling to get back on track. But finally after lots of thought and planning and talks with family and friends, I'm feeling real good about everything again. I'm back on the road, training well and very positive about what lies ahead.
I've had many interviews in the past few weeks and in most of them, I detailed how I was going to start racing in the USA and take a step away from the World Series. I realised though that even though I'd love to do this and I will do it soon enough, it's just not possible this year because we're already half way through the season and I'm just not giving myself enough time to prepare properly for this type of racing. I'm already half way up the ladder with ITU World Series racing, so I'll keep at it this year.
Every 4 years when the Olympics comes round, especially with it being a home Olympics, there is so much hype and excitement over it that quite often, it seems to us the athletes and everyone watching from the outside, that this event is the be all and end all. Sure, it is the biggest race out there and it carries the biggest prize in sport, an Olympic medal. As much as I wish I was competing and am still gutted that I'm not, don't get my wrong, but if you take a step back, in reality it is just one race on one day. Yes it's sandwiched inside a magical two weeks of amazing Olympic experience and festivities. But there are other fantastic events out there and if you are able to forget, move on and re-focus, then there are some amazing opportunities available to you.
The thing about the Olympics, is that most people in the race think they have a shot. They've been building up for this for so long and trained so hard that they have a firm belief that they ARE good enough. You have to drill this into yourself otherwise you have no chance! The problem is there are only 3 Olympic medals, and in reality it is all about those medals. 4th place to 55th means nothing even if 4th is an incredible effort. I've always said that only a relatively small amount of people come home from the Olympics very happy. The athletes who have won a medal and the athletes who were honestly there to get round and make the most of the experience.
I was one of the guys in Beijing who came home upset and I certainly wasn't alone! I know it's totally unjustified and stupid because this is an incredible experience and you're lucky to be there, but you really can't help it! Once the Olympics have been and gone and the games have been handed over to Rio, I know it's going to be hard to find the motivation and drive to continue racing at the highest level because the ultimate goal is now finished. Most athletes are exhausted mentally and physically and are likely to lose their way a little. Knowing all this and experiencing it first hand in 2008, I know that for this reason quite often athletes who just miss out, ironically often end up having their best ever years.
Bearing this in mind I'm fully motivated and fired up now to get as fit as I can possibly just in time to turn up in August ready to deliver some of my best performances. I want to be ready to hit the big races in peak form when 75% of the field are making their return to racing with the famous Olympic Games hangover. I'll never forget the chartered Team GB flight home from Beijing…I think almost everyone was ill on that flight and if not, they were when they got off!
In other news, I'm off to Aix Les Baines in France. I'm driving down with my wife, I think it's 11 hours in the car, which is going to be very tough (I get very bored driving). I'm fortunate enough to have been invited down by the Australian national team. I'm good friends with a lot of the guys and can't wait to hang out in a new environment, with different athletes and get stuck into some good hard training in the sun. To be honest one of the reasons I'm going is the weather has been horrific the past month!Until next time. Will.
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