Sunday, 14 August 2016

Weekend warriors

The Rio Olympics are in full flow and after the negative build up over facilities not being ready, poor crowds and doping athletes the real action is getting to the medal stages.  These finely tuned career athletes have put in at least 8 years hard graft to get to this level and made an amazing sacrifice to represent GB in Rio.  They have a support team of trainers, physio's, nutritionists etc giving them the best chance of bringing home the medals.  Not everyone does but just representing your country at the Olympics is an amazing achievement in it's own right.
For us weekend warriors we can only dream what it must be like to be on the start line of the Olympics.  But when I listen to the interviews and the athlete's saying "we've worked so hard to be here today; the early morning starts in the winter, training in the snow and rain", I think to myself we're not so different in that way.  Training for an Ironman takes 9 months of hard graft 6 days a week, while holding down a fulltime job and having no support team.  Getting ready for the Grand Canyon will take a years training and during that time I have a business to run and a family to support. 
Yesterday I was at the ATHelite Triathlon Club BBQ and I was looking round at all the successful weekend warriors.  From sprint triathlons to ironman, ultra duathlons to ultra marathons we'd done them all.  It made feel very privileged to be part of this friendly, fit group of individuals who encourage and cajole each other to bigger or faster challenges.  The Olympics may be the pinnacle of an athlete's career but let us salute the weekend warriors that hold down jobs, train in every spare moment to line up on a start line that won't be featured on the BBC but the result is every bit as important to them as a gold medal.  Weekend warriors - we ROCK!

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