Monday, November 15, 2010

Working Hard

I’ve always been the type of person who gives my best. That is…unless it was time to practice. In years past, I was not what you would call a “practice person.” In my mind, I didn’t quite see the correlation. When it came time to be competitive in competition, then I’m your (wo)man. But putting yourself through pain and torture when it didn’t count for the W just wasn’t really my thing. Believe me, I was complaining about practice far before Allen Iverson ever did.

In fact, this was how I became a jumper in the first place. Back in high school I thought the sprinters workouts were a little too hard. I realized that if I said I wanted to do both long and triple jump, I could do a little more bounding and a little less repeat 200’s. Done. I tried this same strategy in college early on in my career when I tried telling my coach I didn’t think I was really a 200 meter runner, that maybe I was more cut out for the shorter distances. I’d try anything to try and cut down on those speed endurance workouts. Unfortunately being a Pac-10 and National Champion in the 200 meters blew that theory out of the water and I had to find a way to deal with the pain of the workouts I dreaded most. But that didn’t mean I wouldn’t whine about them. Tie my shoes to buy more time in between intervals. Hide in the bathroom and pretend I was sick.

So imagine my own surprise when this Saturday, when I had the day OFF, I find myself out at the track running repeat 200’s when I didn’t have to. I just decided I’d help a friend get through a workout that is much easier doing with another person and in the process I could help my own fitness. Who am I???

Granted, I know doing extra workouts isn’t always the smart answer or the best way to improve, but it is indicative of how I’ve grown over the years. I started out in this sport relying solely on my athletic talents and my ability to out compete anyone I came across. And while I still believe that there is absolutely no substitute for having the “eye of the tiger”, I also know that hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard. I have the talent but I’m also going to work hard. Harder than I ever have.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m a long jumper and short sprinter for a reason. I’m smart about the events I decided to be talented in. ☺


blake said...

Woo! Next stop 4x400 gold medal!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Breanna, your blogs give me a lot of insight on the female athlete. I coach track at a university and am continually baffled at the antics of my female sprinters on and off the track. They do stay in the bathroom longer between intervals but always work hard once pinned down. I enjoy your reading about your experiences and feel you would make an excellent journalist or reporter once you wind down your career

steveburks said...

"Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard." Tweet this. Or put it on a tee shirt.