18' 1" Olympic Trials 2008

18' 1" Olympic Trials 2008

Sunday, August 28, 2011


I am dying for a fix. A fix of fear that is. Putting myself into situations of peril has always been a part of my life. Calculated risk keeps you on your toes, and it makes life taste just a little sweeter every time you walk away with it. I have given these things up in pursuit of a dream, my last big push. Given up them all, except vaulting of course, which was recently taken away from me, but I've almost got it back as well. I meant the other things, the outlets as I like to call them. Throughout my career I have argued that without these outlets I would have never of made it this far as a pole vaulter, and I may still have been right. But I'm taking the other route. The one I never was willing to take before. Now in the "twilight" of my physical gifts, I feel that it is an action worth taking, removing all unnecessary risk of physical harm to my body. A wise decision, maybe. Boring, indeed, so boring.
My list of outlets is extensive, but they usually involved a defiance of gravity and/or a great deal of speed. Common bonds between my favorite thing in life, and its close relatives. I love being up in the air, off the ground, at high elevations, and even higher speeds. The aversion to gravity awarded me many injuries and a few broken bones, the draw to speed honored me with a few visits with some honorable judges. Yet none of that has ever been enough to push me away from them. They are who I am, and part of how I came to be. Giving them up will prove to be more and more difficult as the months go on. Times of stress and even seasonal depression have been easily curable on the cliffs, slopes, jumps, roads and more. Now my outlets must be mild, limited, and that fact alone scares me more than any of them ever could. I know deep down, the time is right and the sacrifice will be justified.

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