Thursday, August 2, 2012

Lessons from Danell Leyva.

Last night, I watched the Olympics men's gymnastics individual all-around finals and I was struck by something that I am 100% going to strive to apply to my running.


Danell Leyva rocked out on his floor routine at the start of the competition. One rotation later, he had to tackle the pommel horse. 

Unfortunately, it was more like the pommel horse tackled him. 

He had a poor routine that garnered a low score. It looked like he was out of the run for a medal. He was so low in the standings. He had to feel defeated.

He did not give up.

Somehow, someway, he shook off his "catastrophic" pommel horse routine and moved on, scoring well in each of the following rotations and moving up to claim the bronze medal.

He went from a low-low to the high of being an Olympic medalist!


Believe me, I know I'm not ever going to win an Olympic medal. But I still can learn from Danell. And, I bet, so can you.

He did not give up.

How bad must it have appeared after that pommel horse routine? How horrible must he have felt? How many doubts about himself must he have had?

Plenty bad. Plenty horrible. Plenty doubts.

I'm just guessing.

He did not give up.

So what did I learn from Danell? Well, if a 20-year-old can find a way not to crumble under pressure after almost certain failure, then I -- you know, with all the worldly wisdom that comes with age and motherhood -- should not crumble after one lousy race, one lousy run, or one lousy mile.

There is no reason to let past mistakes lead to future failures. A lousy run doesn't mean I've lost my endurance. A lousy mile repeat doesn't mean I've lost my speed. A lousy race doesn't mean my PRs are all behind me.

If I trust my training and trust my abilities, I can rise above poor performances and keep on going. 

In other words, I will not give up.

I've been feeling off ever since my crummy performance at the Boilermaker in early July. August will be my month to shake off that feeling and focus on my training and upcoming races. The Boilermaker will be forgotten.

Have you had to work hard to move on after lousy races? What worked best for you?

Thanks for stopping by!

~ Felice




6 comments:

Brandi said...

what a great perspective!

Sabrina Hayes said...

I'll have to shake off yesterday's run. It was terrible. I got terrible spasms in my back about 1 mile from home. I had to walk it in. I texted a runner friend to ask her what I should do and she immediately called me and talked me home.

Told me not to feel bad about having to talk it in. By the time she finished with me, I felt like a bad ass, as opposed to the failure who couldn cover a 3 mile sprint. Where ever you get your boost is good. Keep at it!

purlgurl said...

you're absolutely right. one lousy whatever is no reason to give up or give in. I've had a series of personal and running set backs, but the performances I'm watching on TV have inspired me as well. Sorta silly--i'm not nearly of their caliber, but it's the determination and perseverance that's making me re-think my motivations...

Erin S said...

Love this! And I needed to read it today!

Jess said...

Awesome post! It's crazy how one a bad day can shadow a whole week... but now I'm inspired to not give up and push through! Thanks for this reminder!

Michelle Dragoo said...

Perfectly said! Sometimes it can be hard to get past those tough times, but we have to if we want to succeed! Awesome post!

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