There aren't very many meets I haven't been to during some stage of my career, but this is the first time I have ever been to the competition in Rieti, Italy.
It's a small town where the people are nice and laid back, they literally wait on you hand and foot and make sure everything is OK. Anything I've needed or wanted has been taken care of, the hospitality they have extended to us has been an A+.
I've been here for a few days now, had a couple of good workouts that were light and straight to the point.
This meet fell at a great time for me. I didn't want to sit around for nearly three weeks without competing between Zurich and Split. I was trying to find a race to go to that wasn't too close to Zurich or too close to the race at Continental Cup. I need every last one of those days to get back fresh after I compete, right now the days of me doing two races a week like I use to are over for the time being.
I don't think people understand the toll our bodies go through hurdling. At close to 210 pounds, at the velocity I run, multiplying my body weight probably four times coming off 42'' barriers, ten times in a race, that's a lot of weight coming down on that lead leg. That's only the competition aspect of it, not counting training. Needless to say, ice baths and massage therapists are my best friends! I probably get rubbed out three times a week and take an ice bath four times a week.
This meet out here in Rieti has startlists comparable to that of a Diamond League meet. The races are going to be great. The weather out here is nice as well and the facility has very good warm up areas. We all should be nice and loose for competition.
The 110 hurdle meet record is 13.07 held by Colin Jackson, I think he set it in 1994. If I have a good day, I think that I should be able to challenge this mark. It would be cool to add another meet record to my list.
I really hope the crowd will be loud and energetic, I love when they are. It was so loud in Zurich before the race, then we got down to get in our blocks, the crowd fell dead silent. It threw me off for real. I had to check back in mentally at the start!
I will update sometime after the competition. I really appreciate the support from you guys, the enthusiasm you show for me and my accomplishments definitely make me feel great. There's a lot of you guys that have been riding with me since way back in '07 when I started this blog and I had a personal best of 13.20 and the mission was 12.87 before I changed it a year later.
It is funny when I've been being interviewed lately and they ask me why I put that as a mission. I tell them because I couldn't think of anything else to put for a title and they look at me funny, maybe next time I should tell them that I was feeling a little like Nostradamus LMAO! They ask me if I thought I could run that time back when I started it and I say "not in a million years!" I never would have thought I would come remotely close to it, but hard work and sacrifice definitely pays off, especially when you combine it with maturing mentally as well.
If you believe it, you can see yourself doing it, you can definitely achieve it!! Always believe in yourself, no matter what people may say.
When I made my decision to accept my scholarship from Howard, people were telling me that it wasn't a place that I could succeed athletically and doing a lot of negative recruiting. I told them I could be good no matter where I attended school and I really believed it.
When I started running in '05, bouncing rent checks every month and working 30+ hours a week at Niketown, I turned down opportunities from two NFL teams right after the '05 draft to sign a rookie free agent deal and come to camp. Two of my training partners at the time said that was a stupid decision and they would have done it if they had the opportunity. I told them I was going to make it in track and field and I wholeheartedly believed I could.
Of course it was hard, but like the Olympic Creed reads "The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part, just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle. The essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well."
At the end of the day, my early struggles make me appreciate my late triumphs so much and I'm definitely a fighter! I always credit my mental toughness as a reason I am successful and I have an undying belief in ME!
I know the direction of my posts start off one way and may end up in a whole 'nother universe LOL, I just get to typing and whatever comes out, come out. I don't proof read what I write either, but I do correct spelling, that red line that comes underneath the words is very annoying to me. I just type what I am feeling at the moment so please excuse my grammatical errors along with the scatterbrain-ness (if that's a word) of this post. Thanks for reading though.
3 weeks ago