November 5, 2007
Howdy!! Wow, how things have changed the past 3 months. My last entry here was just after winning the Silver at the XV Pan American Games in Rio. Immediately after that competition, I returned home to San Diego to prepare for the 2nd half of the European season.
Much to my surprise, the Olympic Training Center (OTC) had undergone several structural changes while I was away. The largest of the changes was the ownership of the Track & Field program at the Training Center. The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) assumed full control of the track and field program, removing all USA Track and Field staff from the facility. This was a very good thing for me. As a result, I was reunited with my first and former coach from 2004, Ty Sevin. Ty was appointed the director of the track & field program at the training center.
I immediately started training with my former coach and made some major adjustments to my technique and shipped off to Europe to chase the ever elusive “A” standard of 81.80m. After several meets in Belgium and Denmark throwing seasonal bests, I flew down to Huelva, Spain near Seville for my last meet of the season on September 13. It was at this meet that I had the throw of my career (to this point). I threw a lifetime best of 81.99m.
This throw ranks as the 9th farthest throw in American history and was the 27th farthest throw in the world in 2007. More importantly, it gave me the “A” standard, or automatic qualifying mark for Beijing. I am only 1 of 2 Americans to have the “A” standard mark in the last 6 years; this means that being a 2008 Olympian is virtually a lock. I am now starting the 4th week of the fall training and am in better shape than I have ever been. This is also the 1st off season for me in 3 years where I am not coming off some kind of injury of surgery.
With the 2008 season just around the corner, I have never been so excited to see the result of putting a full year under the supervision of world class coaching, world class facility’s and world class sports science. All the signs are pointing to more world class performances and representing the United States on the world’s largest stage.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
August 13, 2007
...to give yall (that means you guys who aren't from 'round here) an update on things, the last time I sent the blog entry, I had just been diagnosed with patello femoral arthritis and took a cortisone shot in the knee to clear it up....well it never got any better.
After 2 weeks of extensive rehab, the knee wasn't showing any signs of improvement, so I decided to go back to the doctor and take some pictures (x-rays and MRI's) that eventually showed some extensive cartilage damage and some loose bone fragments in the knee capsule....ahh the dilemma.
After long deliberations, my family and I decided to have my knee scoped to remove the bone fragments and torn cartilage damage. This was a risky choice, given that the knee scope was to be performed 24 days out from USA Championships, but we wanted to have the option to salvage the 2nd half of the European season....so we went ahead and got the scope (see photo above for an in-hospital view).
The knee rehab went way ahead of schedule and at 14 days out from the scope, I took some easy standing throws and felt surprisingly good, I followed that up with an easy training session a few days later and felt like I could take a shot at USA Champs. I booked my flight and hotel a little less than a week before the meet and went into the competition with absolutely no expectations, only that I wanted to be able to leave the track under my own power and not on crutches.
My prayers were answered and the hard work paid off and I managed to take 2nd place at USA Champs and qualify for the Pan Am Games in Rio several weeks later. I left for a small European circuit immediately after USA's but couldn't manage to match what I did at the championships, so I returned home for a few days training before departing to Brazil for the Pan Am Games.
Once I arrived in Europe and took my 1st training session, I knew things were in line for a big throw and I was right. I took Silver at the Pan Am Games and threw a seasons best in some unbelievably bad conditions. The silver was bitter sweet, because the throw was not far enough to get me to Worlds next weekend.
However, I am in good shape now and will be heading back to Europe late next week to finish the 2nd half of the season and try to get some big throws in and get ready for the big show next year!
sorry about the long entry, but there's been allot go down and I thought I would let yall (you guys) know....so long for now!
June 16, 2007
Well, since this is my first blog entry for ITA, I’ll get you caught up with what’s going on with my training…I have been fighting on and off all spring with nagging injuries, a totally blown hamstring back in March, back spasms a few weeks ago and today I got a cortisone injection in my knee because I was diagnosed with “patellar-femoral arthritis”. That’s right: arthritis, already….and that’s after being diagnosed with degenerative joint disease in my elbow back in January, so needless to say I have felt better. I have the Adidas Track Classic, which is next Sunday, an IAAF Grand Prix 2, so I’m hoping to be in good form there, but it doesn’t look good. In other news, I have been at the training center for almost seven months now and have only left the facility a few times now, so I’m headed to Vegas this weekend with some training partners just to get away from daily mental and physical grind of training and try to re-focus my mind and body for the upcoming meets….check back with yall (yeah, that’s the Texas in me) later…yee haw