Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Olympic Training Center

So I’ve wanted to create this post for a while now after such an amazing experience. I was always a dream of mine to go to the Olympic Training Center as an athlete. I’ve also always wanted to go to Colorado after hearing so many people talk about how beautiful it is. Before I start, I have a lot of people to thank for making this trip happen. My coach Matt Russ really talked me up to USA Triathlon and made them spark some interest in me. It meant a lot to me that he would put the time in to do those things for me. It definitely makes me feel like I have a lot of support. I have to thank USA Triathlon, and most importantly, Barb Lindquist, for seeing enough potential in me to want to bring me out to the OTC. When Barb called me to offer me a spot in the camp I couldn’t believe it. I called my parents right after and they were so excited for me. It seemed like just a few months ago I didn’t really have many impressive results and now I’d be going to the OTC for a bit. All of the hard work must be paying off.

When my plane finally arrived in Colorado Springs I looked out the window and saw the beautiful mountain ranges with Pike’s Peak towering on top. For me, it was an amazing sight. I hopped on a shuttle and finally arrived at the OTC. I was finally able to meet Barb in person and was excited to meet all the other guys at the camp who turned out to be a really awesome group.

Pike's Peak

Riding up some mountains

We were incredibly busy all week. We would spend most of the day going from one training session to the next. The amount of instruction we had in the pool was really incredible. To be able to have that kind of attention day in and day out would pay huge dividends, especially in a sport like swimming. The altitude was also pretty noticeable to me. Every swim set felt like a hypoxic set. It’s easy to see how altitude could be a huge help in endurance sports. Some of the riding was also incredible. The Garden of the Gods was wild. Riding around with scenery like that made it impossible to take the smile off my face. Riding up a climb and looking at the views really just made me laugh about how amazing it was.

I could get into all the fine details, but the bottom line is—we swam a lot, we biked a lot, and we ran a lot. We worked on our technique all week and found things to work on to make ourselves better athletes, and that’s what it’s all about. I came out of the camp more excited and more motivated than I have ever been before. It was a taste of the triathlon lifestyle that I want to live for a long, long time.

Who built this thing!?

We made it to the top!

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