You say I have been lazy? Me say I’ve been just busy. Every new page in book of life comes with new tasks and responsibilities. And what if it all changes with every word you read on that page? Every new day is a NEW day and yesterday is clearly a past. Something I am trying to master and learn from a guy who is only 5 months old!
A little bit about part you might be interested to hear about – orienteering. World Cup in Spain surprised me. In a bad way! I just wasn’t ready for such tough terrain we had to face during long distance, but that’s the price to pay if one spends whole winter training for XC running exclusively. The only thing to regret now is the fact that I quit my race with only 1k to instead of doing it early since results were anyway cancelled…due to missing controls. ?! And here is the FUN part of it – I was standing there at -2’ mark before my start. Usually I am in my race mode by then, but my attention was caught by a lady (an organizer apparently) crawling out of a steep reentrant, with CONTROLS on her shoulder. And so I drop a joke to start staff standing next to me „there is no point to run this race since controls are already taken away”. He laughs…”no no no man, it’s only for a public race”. How wrong he was! Middle distance on following day was no fun either. Well it can’t be if fastest pace I could do during my morning run was 6’/k. Still good enough for top 30! So there was only one thing left to enjoy – the sun!
Hustle and trouble continued also in Portugal during EOC, but there is a certain price for everything! You don’t get sun in wintertime for free! You pay with your capability to organize things and have a plan, to put controls in right places, to create start list that works and so on. In other words – organization level didn’t match the scale of the competition. European Champs are not the highlight of the season for most of the athletes, but still deserves some attitude and WORK. I know – it was same for everyone and I don’t argue. At least I am satisfied with results I did, considering how bad I felt only few days before finals kicked off. Taking rest or tapering wasn’t really a part of my plan before World Cup in Spain and I paid for it. I was in deep…like DEEEEEP down in valley of tiredness and only found my legs during morning run before middle final kicked off.
I went ALL IN for that one since I had some unexpected pain in my right foot and I didn’t know if I would be able to run 20k+ long final on following day. Choice was wise and I ended up on 5th spot with a chance for being 4th. Medal within a reach? Honestly – not this time!
I knew I was slightly too slow from very beginning of long final, but big was my surprise when Fabu caught me up by 3’. I looked at him and thought „that guy is not running fast enough either”. I had to hang with him to have any chance for top 10 and I was right once again. Not that it was easy, but 10th position was well worth it!
Being dead tired, I was drawing scenarios of how our relay performance would go. Frankly I didn’t have high expectations since Martins and Kalvis were not on the team. How wrong I was!! Our first leg master Janis Kums did great and we were only 30” down. War machine Arturs Paulins kept the level and I headed out with realistic chance of reaching medal spot. Shure I wasn’t aware of that and only noticed when missed easy control in a short forking (not too often I have a shortest one :D) and saw France, Norway and Switzerland passing me 30” ahead. I nearly run a life out of myself putting up a good fight against Mare (Finland 1), but lost it at the very end. Our 7th spot made my team mates smile (in a good way), but I knew I could have done much more for them. That should teach me to behave and never judge performance of others before it actually takes place!
Apart from races?! Broken down rent car, accommodation that requires 4h cleaning before moving in, mosquitos… none of that will spoil memories I took with me from lovely Portinho da Arrabida. I still have a strong feeling I will come back one day to walk that moonlight bridge over the Atlantic.
Worth mentioning that Tiomila was another struggle for us as a team? Ok, it was! Being 24th best team on the planet is not what we aim for. What makes it all look a bit brighter is fact that I was finally able to perform early in the morning and I had enough speed to fight for top positions if needed. Maybe we will have a stable last leg runner for following big relays!
And the page is turned again! Now all my training focus is dedicated towards World Championships in July here, in Lavarone, where I am currently “training” my days away on a 2 weeks training camp.
Sat down yesterday watching eagles gliding over peaks. Remembered a good friend of mine once told to me that there is everything to win and nothing to lose. Am I wise enough to add that even when I loose I am still winning?!