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Are you game to commit yourself

11 December 2017 One Comment

Everyone hits a plateau with it comes to working out. Let us motivate you to keep going.

Today one of my athletes asked my advice on which Ironman he should target for next season, Port Macquarie or Cairns. He pointed out that Port had 40 Kona qualifying spots, and Cairns had 80. He would stand a greater chance of qualifying in Cairns.

I agree, the chances are much greater in Cairns. But lets get serious, the people who take those qualifying spots are seriously committed. The way the qualifying spots for the World Ironman championship are divided up between the age groups, you have to be in the top one or two percent of your age group.

The people who take those spots approach everything they do all year better than 98% of the field. The age groupers who take those spots train like professional athletes all year. They don’t just get serious for the last twelve weeks, after dodging sessions and taking shortcuts and discounts for the previous thirty weeks.

I have had seventy five athletes qualify for Kona.

Every one of them have been prepared to do whatever it takes to get there. I have seen military like discipline from busy mothers, businessmen with high pressure lives. I’ve had university students and medical interns show by example, just how to use the hours in a week so effectively that others in the squad expect them to produce outstanding results. That’s what they produce.

No-one produced excellent results without setting out to produce excellence. Excellence is a habit, it starts every day when the alarm goes off earlier than your competitors, when you get out of bed immediately after switching the alarm off, no thinking about it.

The people who have qualified have all had obstacles thrown in their path, but they’ve all overcome them. They’ve all had lots of other commitments to manage, but they’ve managed to direct more passion towards their goal than to other areas of their life. It’s possible to perform at your work, maintain a healthy relationship, but be able to direct all the passion necessary toward your sporting goal. Others are doing it every year.

You don’t have to be this one eyed fanatic I have described to compete and have a happy life, but keep in mind, these are the sort of people you will be competing against. These are the sort of people you have to beat in order to step up and take that spot, it’s a choice you have to make if you really want it.

I have a swim coach friend who yesterday told me about a talented 13yr old distance swimmer in his squad. He pointed out to her and her parents that the typical age of an elite female 800m swimmer, is around sixteen, the Tokyo Olympics are three years away. If she wants to go for it, he believes she has the talent, and the attitude, the time to start working on this is yesterday. Since they had that conversation, she has been early to every session. This young swimmer has “turned the switch” in her head.

If you have big goals this season, will you “turn the switch”?

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