May 08 2013
There is a saying that reads: “What’s for you won’t go by
you.” I’ve often believed this. It doesn’t mean that I expect good things
in life to materialise or that I’m unmotivated to pursue my goals and dreams.
For me it means that when you want something, you strive to get there and if
you are unsuccessful despite your best efforts then perhaps it wasn’t meant to
be. Last year despite my best efforts I was unable to compete in St Croix. It was not meant to be.
This year because of my best efforts I made it to the race. In doing so I achieved the goal that has
been my driving force for the past 6 months of surgery rehab. I was so happy
just to stand on the start line. In fact I was more than happy. I was scared,
anxious and emotional. I probably cried more times in the past 5 days than I
have in a while. Tears were shed at the airport when I arrived and reunited
with my St Croix buddies. Tears were shed before the start of the race as it meant so much to be there.
Tears were shed after the race: of relief, of joy and of sadness. Often in sports psychology
the trick is to suppress your emotional side, to control your reactions and
concentrate on the act of performance. 18 months on the benches is a long time
and performance was not at the top of my race day goals. Much as I wanted to, I
didn’t need or want to compare myself to the athlete who had won this race in
the past. I wanted to have fun and enjoy simply doing a race. And I did have
fun. I smiled, I laughed, I enjoyed. I raced against myself the whole way. I
raced in memory of my Dad. Every time it got hard, each time I started to waver and have doubts I put them aside and I pushed myself harder. I wanted him to be proud of me. I know how much he loved to
watch me race and in finishing the race I honoured his memory in my own way.
Being victorious was so very unexpected and very special. There is a place for
emotion in athletic performances, as long a it drives you onwards rather than
dragging you downwards.
St Croix 2013 was for me and for everyone that has helped and supported me through some tough times and for that I am truly grateful.