18' 1" Olympic Trials 2008

18' 1" Olympic Trials 2008

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A High Stress Gamble

My girlfriend said it best, “you live, you learn, and you move again.”
I’m not sure why but I have been sort of keeping my move to Northern California under the radar, but the word is getting out. I guess it is because I do feel like a bit of a failure. I left so many great people behind in Idaho that counted on me. I was part of something very special out there, and now I’m sort of lost. Moving to Minnesota was supposed to be a place where I could train full time and work part time but mostly take advantage of a year round indoor training situation. But things didn’t work out the way they were supposed to. Long story short, being here has become a very bad fit for me, and I feel that it is important to remove myself from the dynamic. I ignored far too many things for too long, and as everything started coming to a head I have finally realized the smartest thing for me to do, is get out.

Sure I could go back to Idaho, and the thought had occurred to me. But I left there to have more opportunity as an athlete. Where my career has led me physically, it was just becoming too difficult for my broken body to have the proper conditions to continue on as an athlete there, plus this deal with all its sugar coating, sounded so much sweeter. As a coach, things were great at ISU. But that part of my life currently needs to come second to my athletic goals. So, California it is.

The idea of going back to my home town has been growing inside of me for quite some time. Worldwide the notion of California is beaches and surfers, but it’s a pretty large state, and has much more to offer than just that. I grew up in the Mountains, and I belong there. Being away from them has been more difficult for me than I could have ever imagined. Being surrounded by tall trees and having year round access to rivers, cliffs, trails, and kick ass disc golf courses is the norm for me. In this, most likely final, season of my career as a Pole Vaulter I am finding more and more out about the importance of overall psychological well being, happiness, and spiritual oneness. These things, though mystical or silly as they may sound, are a critical part of success on the runway, and off of it.

So my journey to the Olympic stage now takes me on another epic road trip, this time 1,900 miles. My starter is going out and I’m leaking oil profusely. My girlfriend’s car will jump to massive RPM’s for no particular reason. It took the combination of every penny we had left and a personal loan to get us out of our rental lease. We are still responsible for 2 months of rent.  All gas costs of two cars traveling across the country will more than likely have to go on my credit card as well as shipping our belongings that don’t fit in our two cars. I don’t know exactly where I will be able to vault yet, close by, once I get there. I don’t have access to a traction table, therapeutic, or chiropractic help yet. I don’t have any way to make money nor does my girlfriend. I’m sure the scary fact list goes on, and with all that being said, I am little nervous about it.

Amidst it all, the future still looks brighter, if you can imagine that, and I know things will be fine once we get settled in. I have already contacted as many vault folks as possible in the area and am getting good feedback from them. I’ll be in a place where I am surrounded by good people who I can trust, and that fact alone gives me hope. Things will work out, as they always do, thanks to my family, friends, and the Pole Vault Community.

With a few days of delay, some stress, some laughs, patience, and pain, I will be right back on track and continue down this insane path that ends in London, England

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