Trek Women
August 16, 2008

Fight well...

Wheaties_box_empty Last night, Bill had Russ, Wayne and myself over for a lovely dinner. We had the TV on to catch Phelps out-touch Milorad Cavic to win the gold and tie Mark Spitz’s record.  We were jumping up and down and screaming (fueled slightly by margaritas, but still). The race was awesome as is Phelps’ achievement.

This afternoon, I was doing laundry and had the Games turned on and it wasn’t swimming, gymnastics, diving or track and field events – NBC saves those for prime-time. It was what some might call the “less popular” events – rowing, field hockey, badminton and water polo. The events where, at least in the U.S., the athletes probably won’t score multi-million dollar endorsement deals or end up on a Wheaties box. They aren’t pros (like tennis, soccer and basketball players and, yes, even cyclists) who go amateur for 19 days. There is no pro in their future, their payment is the golden memory of competing with the world's best.

As I was thinking about “amateurism” which we consider a negative word, I discovered online the official Olympic creed:

"The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part, just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle. The essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well."

Aren’t we all amateurs then? Fight well friends.

Comments

Dear Laura,
You are so right. I am 50 years old but am told that I look 40...ha!! I don't always feel that way. I got back on a bike at the beginning of the summer and loved every minute of it. I bought a hybrid since at the time I wasn't sure if I would be able to do this. I have worked as a Paramedic for 10 years and finally had to leave due to several back injuries. To make a really long story short; I've always been very active and involved with fitness and sports. After the injuries, I became much more sedentary and gained about 30 lbs. (It's actually more like 50 but I think I was too skinny to begin with....and 30 sounds better). After getting on my bike, I felt my energy level come back, I was losing weight, my muscles were toning up and I had way more energy. Well, my back is out again which should only be temporary...I hope. All this to say that I agree with the Olympic Creed. While I want to get better at the sport, it really doesn't matter if I am as fast as everyone else. As long as I can enjoy what I'm doing and have the benefits of the workout. Thanks for your blogs. I have enjoyed them....oh and by the way; my husband is buying me a Trek bike for my birthday in November!! YAHHH!!

PS: as you can see, I do not write for a living :)...please forgive me

Denise Mitchem
North Carolina

Posted by: Denise Mitchem | Aug 17, 2008 2:40:37 PM

Hi Denise,
Thanks for your comment and good for you!! It's amazing how riding your bike becomes so addictive. You start just hoping you can go around the block and the next thing you know you're doing 10 even 20 miles. I bet there is some pretty riding in North Carolina too. I'm a believer that good scenery to look at makes all the difference.

Anyway, so what kind of Trek are you thinking about? Going for some skinnier tires? FX? Road? The Pilot's a nice road bike with a more upright position that might be easier on your back. I'm always curious why people buy the bikes they do.

Cheers,
Laura

Posted by: Laura | Aug 18, 2008 8:19:07 AM

I am SO printing that out and attaching it to my bulletin board. Mayn people seem to be puzzled when I talk of beating cancer as just looking at every day and continuing to put one foot in front of the other. Heck, if we aren't all doing that then what the heck are we doing anyway? Thanks for digging up the awesome inspiration for us.
-Jen

Posted by: Jen | Aug 20, 2008 2:10:35 PM

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