Ambition toward Sochi … Happy 2013

2013Happy New Year!                        <La version française suit>

“Today we live in a world of instant everything – food, career, money, victory, happiness – we want it all now. The concept of working towards something for several years and overcoming seemingly endless obstacles to achieve a goal is not as pervasive as it once was.” Kristina Groves

This quote was part of Kristina’s blog in early December, just after Jean-Philippe Le Guellec who has been competing with the national biathlon team for 9 years, won his first World Cup race. (Congrats J-P!) She was recalling how long it took for her to win her first race and “the special kind of attitude to find the simple joys and appreciate small steps forward within the endless struggle to the top.”

The fact that you care about each step and every detail, and have an insatiable curiosity to do – and achieve— more, is what makes you so good at your sport. Continue reading

Perfection may be a myth – but it’s worth trying for

Over the years I have enjoyed a number of exchanges with Kristina Groves, a world champ speed skater with 4 Olympic medals, where we have discussed the value of technique. We freely admit that we were completely dedicated (obsessed?) to perfecting it and that parking our brains on it was often the only thing that helped us to avoid realizing how hard we were pushing ourselves and how much pain our bodies were in as we were training or racing.

The idea of perfection has popped up in a few blogs I’ve seen recently and, for the most part, everyone seems to agree that the quest for it can be, and I’ll paraphrase –  distracting. In a mentor message to the 2012 Team and in the Power of More I shared my ideas on perfection and I thought I’d bring them to the surface again. Here, from the section of my book on Preparation, is an excerpt that discusses the myth of perfection; Continue reading