BUCS 2011

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Finished 11th out of a field of 24!

Well the actual result wasn’t exactly fantastic, with a best throw of 11.73m, but boy I sure did learn a lot from yesterday.

I was a last minute substitute into the team as someone withdrew due to injury. Before going to the competition I looked up the entry list and saw plenty of people with higher PBs than me, with a big group of 12-13m throwers (my PB was only 12.02, so definitely at the bottom of that group). I knew that if there’s any chance of me making it into the final top 12, I would have to pull one big hit out.

Qualifiers were split into two groups (Mike and Rob were in the other group) and we began our warm up throws out in the field. I saw my competitors and knew that it would be a good fight for the top 12th today as they were within my reach (warm up went pretty well for me, hitting near the 12m line).

However once the competition started it was a case of someone throwing badly and then the whole group kind of threw horribly. I also tried to give it a little more on my first throw and didn’t even hit past 11m.

I guess the thing about being a decathlete that makes you different from a single eventer is that you know no matter what you absolutely have to get a throw in within 3 attempts (you only get 3 attempts during the decathlon and not 6), hence you’re mentally prepared to deal with the situation.

Some of the other throwers I saw that could clearly throw 12-13m, however on messing up their first throw, they tensed up on the second attempt causing yet another bad throw. And on their last attempt try to get a ‘safety throw’ in, only to not get anywhere near their potential.

I managed to relax and get a comfortable hit on the 2nd attempt (11.57m), before once again like my first throw try too hard and got a rubbish hit on my last attempt. Seeing how the rest of the field did I knew I has a slight chance of making it into the top 12th, so I waited at the track to hear the announcements of the finals qualifiers.

Managed to sneak in at the 12th position! Overjoyed when I heard my name announced over the PA. =)

So I went into the finals realising that I do best when I stay in a relaxed focus state, rather than trying to pump myself up and ending up trying too hard (it works for some people, but not me). Managed to get better after each round and finished with a 11.73m in 11th position.

Well to sum up the day here are the 3 lessons I’ve learnt that I would carry through to next week:

Lesson no.1

Warm up schedule: did the Brian Clay dynamic warm up (which BC, 2008 Olympic Decathlon Gold Medallist, was kind enough to reply my tweet thanking him for it) and worked out exactly how much time it needs and how it works into the pre-competition schedule.

Lesson no.2

Food: Packed a sandwich lunch and brought fruits yesterday, now I have a much better idea of how much more food I need to bring to get it past 2 days of competition in the decathlon.

Lesson no.3

When the race is on, all bets are off.

We got ourselves a game 😉

Less than 1 week to Woodford.

=)

p.s. Just to add before I head to sleep, something that’s resonating in my mind. Told Max (my training partner) earlier about how the competition panned out yesterday and about how lucky I was slipping into the finals on the 12th slot. He quickly reminded me that it was me who put myself in that position. Thinking back one year ago my pb for shot put was 11.55m, and that was a one off throw. Rest of the year I was struggling to get past 11m, hence there would be no way I could easily throw a 11.73m without all those hours of training I’ve put in. I guess in a way even though this is not the first time I’m representing my school for BUCS (previously I got selected as well but that was only because no one else wanted to do it), this time around I feel like I earned it and that made all the difference.

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