When you check in it’s blinking back at you from behind the reception desk.
It’s flashing back at you on every screen saver.
In case you didn't know how long it was until the beginning of the Olympic Games, you do now. You cannot be at the Olympic Training Center and overlook the importance of this countdown. People here are on a mission. Each and every person shares the same focus and is working day in and day out to make the dream a reality and they realize that every day counts. The countdown is everywhere, but it’s merely a reflection of what’s imprinted on everyone’s brain.
I stayed onsite at the Olympic Training Center in 2006 for a little over three months and then spent the remainder of the year training here but living offsite about 5 minutes away. For a sport that seems about as amateur as a professional sport can be, the center does a fantastic job of providing an environment that truly fosters the development of elite athletes. As a “professional” in this sport, many of us find our own coaches, look to secure places that we can train and lift on a consistent basis, locate our own chiropractor and massage person, and hopefully we are lucky enough to earn income from participating in this sport, because we pay for it all out of our own pocket. That’s why a place like this is so amazing, because your focus is able to be on becoming the best athlete you can be and all the other stuff is taken care of.
Not only that, but the energy here is so much different than anywhere else. As soon as I arrived, my own internal countdown became that much more noticeable. Everywhere you look there is a call to greatness and people who are answering the same call surround you. You aren’t sharing the track with the soccer mom who’s trying to lose an extra five pounds, or lifting on a platform next to the freshman who doesn’t know how to do a power clean properly, or waiting to get adjusted after Grams is through. I love being here because everywhere I turn is someone just like me and it is inspiring.
I’m only here for the week but I think it’s going to be a great rejuvenator for me. Usually when you are away from your normal training environment you do your best to fit your workouts in, but when you come here everything revolves around your training and you still get the camaraderie of your friends…not to mention all the free food you can eat! It’s a win-win situation. If Rosa makes her famous tortilla soup while I’m here, my trip will be absolute perfection!