This morning at the pool, a gentlemen (medalist at 1972 Olympics in Judo) asked me if I was ready for the 2012 Olympics. I answered his question with a pretty definite “No”.
He half glared at me with disappointment and said “You have to be ready today! The Games are less than 2 years away.” I am fully aware of the limited time line I have to work with before the London Olympics, as well as the monumental task I have in front of me in order to make the Olympic team. If the Olympics were to be held next month, I would not be on the start line, hence the answer that I gave. His lecture afterward did however, get me thinking.
When someone asks me a week out of a race, “Are you ready?” I always say “not yet, but on I’ll be ready on race day.” This is typically the approach I take to life. Currently, I have a great amount of work to do to realize my Olympic dream. For example, my best 1500m swim time is 19:03, two years ago. This needs to be down to 17:00. My fastest 10km run split is 31:36 en route to win Duathlon nationals in 2007. This time needs to be under 30mins consistently. As far as cycling goes, my power needs to improve from 3.9 Watts/Kg to above 5 Watts/kg.
Reading this, you may think that this is out of reach, but I don’t. I may not know what my body is capable of, but I am more than willing to test the limits of my potential. Within myself, I see so much potential for improvement and growth, that I have no idea where my limits are. Granted, to achieve my goals will require sacrifice, pain, determination and a willingness to dig places into my being that no human wants to reach. My commitment to myself, my supporters and my competitors, is that I will go to those places and see how good Grant Burwash can be. I may not be ready for the Olympics or World Championships today, but I am ready to do what is required today to take me there.
At this time of year there is no one following you around checking up on your race results. There are no competitions to test yourself or see how the competition is doing. There is no heat training or gorgeous long summer runs or rides (at least in Calgary). What carries you through the winter is your willingness to put in the time to make a dream a reality. And yes, each day you have to be ready to push yourself.
Not being ready for a race several months out is acceptable. Not being ready to put the work today that will get you to your goal, means you will never be ready.
So I ask you. Are you ready?