Monday, January 28, 2008

The Worst I Can Be

It is 6:14am in the morning and I am sitting on the floor of my hotel room in Vienna, Austria with the lights out, trying to be quiet so that I don't wake up my roommate who does not seem to be suffering from the same jet lag that I am. I've actually been awake since about 5:20am or so. I tried to go back to sleep but that wasn't working. My mind is running rampant and I figured I might as well get up and be productive.

I haven't been able to update my blog because I've been traveling. I was in Glasgow, Scotland up until yesterday morning. We stayed at the Crowne Plaza Hotel which is all well and good except for the fact that it cost 17 pounds per day to use the internet which works out to be around $35 USD!!! That's highway robbery if you ask me so I chose not to be connected to the World Wide Web for a few days. It's actually not all bad. It can be addictive sometimes.

Yesterday morning we left the hotel at 6am to go to the aiport. My flight didn't leave until 9am but that's the price you pay when you have to travel in groups with other athletes- they take you to airport waaaay in advance to accommodate everyone. After many delays and therefore an extended layover in Heathrow airport in London, I finally arrived here at around 9:15pm!!! That's over 12 hours of travel!!! Any of you who are familiar with Europe know that this trip should really take no longer than about 5 or 6 hours maximum including layovers.

Suffice to say, I was exhausted last night by the time I got in. At least my driver was ready and waiting for me at the airport once I got through customs so I made it to the hotel relatively quickly. I checked in quickly and thankfully the restaurant was still open so I hurried down there and had dinner. The food was EXCELLENT which is sometimes rare over here but that was definitely a plus. I ran into a friend of mine who I hadn't seen in ages, Coby Miller, and so I sat and had dinner with him and a couple other athletes.

OK, so enough beating around the bush. I am going to keep this short and sweet. I competed 2 days ago in Glasgow. It was my first time competing at Kelvin Hall and all I can say is Lord Have Mercy!!! I don't think I could possibly have competed any worse. I jumped about as far as the average high schooler. I finished 6th.....out of 6!!! My runup to the board was backwards - I ran the first part fast-ish and the last half slow-ish. My takeoff was horrible. My mind and my focus were apparently taking sabbaticals. I had talked before about having my A game ready. Well I think this was oh, maybe my X,Y,Z game!! If my old coach from Stanford, Brooks Johnson wasn't there helping me throughout the competition to sort out the foolishness that I was doing, I think I might still be at Kelvin Hall, hiding under the bleachers somewhere. Talk about a lesson in humility!! Good grief!!

This sort of performance REALLY makes you question yourself and begs you to be sure that you are truly committed. The only good thing is that it cannot be any worse - that's for sure!! Thankfully, Brooks reassured me that it wasn't all bad. This was evidenced by the fact that even though it took me all 6 jumps to get what he was saying, on the last jump I jumped a distance far enough that would have probably placed me somewhere in the top 3....except for one minor was a FOUL!!! no one cares and it doesn't count, except to me and Brooks. Now even this distance wasn't stellar but on a night where even the girl that won (she finished 5th at the World Championships last year) jumped about 2 feet off of her personal best also, it would have at least been some solace to know that I was being competitive.

But that was not the case. I was an embarrassment to myself and I am OK in acknowledging that because it is what it is and it was the truth. Some changes are going to come swiftly in regards to what I am doing but as Brooks so eloquently put it, "There are no medals being handed out in January. The Oympics are in August!" Again, the results didn't lie. I just simply did not get the job done but I am woman enough to admit that, because I am in it for the long haul. I'm not going to wine and complain because last I checked that doesn't solve anything. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right and I'm not ready to hand in my jump shoes just yet....


Joice Maduaka said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joice Maduaka said...

Now you know i'm the quote queen.

Here's one for you.

Success is not a destination, it's a journey.

Keep your chin up Jack. As I said on Saturday your still my hero.


Brianna said...

Don't you just love the fact that you can now speak about all your emotions so freely on your blog?! lol...that is the hard part for me...knowing that i must update when i really don't want to and having to put into words those things that i would sooner rather forget completely! but it is cathartic in a way and i think you spoke the truth and said all you needed to say! there isn't too much to be said, because you're's january. if everything felt perfect and you had no idea what you were doing wrong then you should worry but we both know that's not the case. and if it makes you feel any better, Kluft got 3rd out of 3 jumpers and jumped 6.33 i think in boston, and she was the headliner of the meet! :)

Jackie Edwards said...

Thanks ladies! It's good to know that I have people out there who can appreciate the struggle. Bri- I was kinda happy there for a minute that I didn't have internet service so that I didn't have to update about my horrible results - LOL!! You're so right about that. As always, it could be worse I guess.
Joice - You are such a great friend and I look forward to seeing you in a couple days in Linz:)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing and I do believe that things WILL get better; they can only get better. Keep your best foot forward [no pun intended] and everything will work out.


Ron Bramlett said...

You gotta have a short memory when track is your profession. There's still a lot of meets ahead! Keep your head up.

And don't you hate how that pound is killin the dollar?? Thirtyfive bucks for internet? No thanks, I'll wait til the next meet!

Anonymous said...

The fact that you are able to blog about your moments of "worseness" proves that you are able to move on from it. We all have our moments. Knowing that we have sunk makes rising to the top a far better accomplishment than already being at the top.

You'll do better the next time, and the next time after that, and the time after that until you do your best in August. No worries!

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