It happens so rarely that you perform better than you had expected or hoped. Usually I demand more from my body than it can give me. There aren’t too many days when you laugh when a teammate tells you your place because you’re both happy and unsure that she’s telling the truth, or when your first glance at a results list your own name jumps out at you from the very top. It’s been awhile since I’ve been able to finish a sprint race, stop, turn around and watch the sprint for second. I am currently in Collingwood, Ontario at the Canadian National Championships and the racing has been going exceptionally well– I had a clear margin of victory in the 10k classic & classic sprint, third in the 5k skate, and Ronsse & I won the team sprint prior to the start of the official Nationals.
I know that if I was on the World Cup I could have had the same races with much less celebrated results. Racing domestically makes a good race look phenomenal. It would be easy to point out that if so-and-so had been here I wouldn’t have won. This week, though, I’m going to give myself a gold star for a job well done and simply be happy about it. I always look back at my races and analyze what I could have done better, what I would have changed, how I need to adjust for the next race where I encounter similar conditions/terrain/situations. This is certainly important self-reflection for the growing process (and still a process I went through after the races this week, some habits are hard to break), but it’s important to give credit for what you’ve done well. So about this week I will say, these are races where I skied well. Right now I’m letting success motivate me. Starting in May it’s going to be another long summer and fall of focused training… it’s good to have remembrances of both success and failure from the season before to drive your will to train. Failures, for most of us, are easy to find so grab what successes you can.