This past weekend the 2021 Para Cycling Road World Championships were held at the Circuito Estoril in Cascais, Portugal. On my vision board that I have in my office are the words ‘Gold – World Championships – Portugal June 9-13, 2021, in big bold letters. Little did I know when I put them there that a pandemic would hit the world!
Unfortunately, Australia was not there due to our travel restrictions by the federal Government. But I watched the results in order to gauge how my competitors were fairing and looking forward to my meeting with them in Tokyo.
It is an understatement to say that I was disappointed and sad not to be there because the one thing I love about cycling is the racing! It is one of the things that keeps me going, that and setting goals for myself. But the feeling of giving everything you have got to give in a race and especially in the Time Trial, it is what I thrive on. I have been racing virtually, but it certainly isn’t the same as being in amongst your competitors…to see if your training has paid off. It’s not only the hours of training on the bike (or trike in my case) but the hours in the gym to become as strong as you can. And to see if the sacrifice that everyone on your personal team has made has helped you attain your goals.
This is what persistence is all about, continuing to train hard (in spite of not being able to travel to competition) and always looking towards the future, hoping that the one or two races that you have targeted will happen, to see if you attain those goals. To be honest, it hurt not being there and with thoughts of ‘what if’ throughout the weekend, I had to try and put those to one side and continue to train. If anything I have realised that in this last year and a half of the pandemic, I have had to be persistent. My goals and success certainly weren’t going to happen overnight, they have become a long-term effort
As I am now no longer World Champion I think it made me train harder today! Made me want that next race and to win those stripes back next year even more! But it also made me look to Tokyo and know that I can push myself even harder over the next 77 days until my first race, the Time Trial. I have another 77 days to leave no stone unturned and I believe that this persistence will help me do the best that I can possibly do on that day! Look out world…here I come!
“Ambition is the path to success. Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in.” ~ Bill Bradley