I could try to express it with my own words, but I am convinced that I wouldn’t succeed better than my greatest supporter Kristine did here. I will try to translate it as good as possible. So here it goes.
„He is just an ordinary guy from Aluksne who is filling his dreams this summer. Hard trainings arrange in countless hours, kilometers often become endless, but so is joy about finally doing things he is made for and is good at. Things he has dreamed about so lot. This dream wasn’t over yet and he proved it. And will prove it again.
You already know the rest and hopefully will never forget feelings of the moment, cause those either have to be put on shelf, hanged at the wall or gathered deep in our hearts.”
But when did this dream start to become reality? I would vote for early autumn of 2011 when I went to Turku for training camp and visited my mentor Mikko. We were discussing my future plans and question about ultimate goal raised. My replay to it was that I want to win World champs in Finland in 2013, but Mikko had something to add. „Why not in Switzerland?” he asked and we both laughed about this idea. Apparently we were laughing for different reasons. Same question bothered my mind during morning jog just before middle final. „Why not today?” I asked myself while looking at summit of Mont Blanc. That day was great!
Race itself went very smooth and steady. My only mistake was route choice to first control since I couldn’t choose between starting right or left and went straight instead, but on the other hand this small coincidence calmed me down and forced to focus more. So even that was for good.
Long final approached and I was out again for my morning jog. Mountain was still there and therefore my task was clear. From very first meters I realized that it’s not going to be my best running day and it will require lot of will to run a good race. I was very tired approaching spectators control and big was my surprise when my team and speaker told that this could be another medal race. I still don’t know where I got that extra power to run best time over last part and finish, but looking at pictures I can’t see any signs of life in my face.
Relay. There will be time for that too. Just hang with me.
„What now?” many have asked me. Well I already have an answer — ultimate goal is still ON — World Champion in long distance in 2013.
I am really grateful to my family for supporting me during my path towards this dream.
Black Horse size thanks to both of my mentors and coaches — Jari Ikaheimonen & Mikko Black Rider Knuuti.
Biggest thanks to my supporters who believed in my potential when I had nothing to „put on a table” except my confidence (one gets far with that).
I appreciate countless greetings I have received via sms, emails, on facebook and other „places” around. It was superb feeling during both — Saturday night arrival and press conference two days later. I wasn’t really right when I said that victories are born in our minds. One has to dig deeper.
And I can still hear that little animal in my head whispering… peak performance, peak performance.
Photo: Natalia Vinogradova and Jan Kocbach (Worldofo.com)