There’s a weird phenomenon in our sport where we seem to think it’s okay to gloat when you’ve won, but in the spirit of support.
You often hear Sean Woodland or Rory McKernan excitedly shout “This sport is unique in that very often the person who finishes last is cheered for as much, if not more, than the person who finishes first!”
Err… okay! You know, in class, when we’re all one team, it’s cool to support the person who’s struggling on their last 10 burpees. In competition, it’s a dick move.
The following has been written after conversations with multiple Regionals and Games athletes (I used to be a Games Coach, yano 😉 )
(For the purposes of clarity, anything is quotation marks is actually said, anything in italics is what the winner is thinking, and anything in bold is what’s going through the loser’s mind.)
Judge: “Time! 8:11.5!!!”
Phew! Yes! I bitched that!
I’m so glad it’s over.
*Wave to the fans, find my coach, smile at them. Hugs from my family and partner.*
Sweet. Someone hand me a protein shake.
*Gulps it down.*
Urgh, that’s rank. But hey, sponsorship!
Heart rate is coming down a bit. Oh, I’ve a tear in my hand. Never mind. I’ll tape it up for the muscle ups later. I actually feel pretty good.
Oh, THEY’RE still working out. They’re struggling bad, better go talk to them.
SHIT! I think that’s a slap tear.
Why am I so out of breath? I crushed this in practice. I’m not even moving anywhere near as fast as I was.
I hate this sport. I’m quitting. How the fuck am I meant to overhead squats and rope climbs after this?
Oh shit, now the others are coming over to cheer me…“Good job RIVAL!”
I am totes sportsmanlike!
Smile. Oh fuck smiling. I don’t want to smile right now.
“Keep it up come on!”
Supporting shows I care. I’m so getting on the update show because of this.
Nod at them. Maybe that’ll make them go away.
How are they so far back?
Why isn’t anyone else struggling? Maybe they could fuck off and go cheer them?
“Use your technique! I know you’re tired. Just focus on one thing! Don’t think about it!”
They’re fucked! There’s NO WAY they’re going to finish it.
And now my forearm is cramping as well. I knew I went out to fast this morning.
Great. I’ve let everyone down and now the camera is on me. “One minute, you can do anything for one minute.”
How long more of this? I kinda wanna go for my ice bath but that would be bad.
I want this OVER!
TIME!!!I just want to get out of here without crying.
Oh they’re going to hug me?
Yep, they’re hugging me!
Bollocks. Here come the tears 🙁
Better say something to them.
“Hey, you know what? You’ll be back stronger.”
Leave me alone.
“You’ve such heart. Honestly, you are my inspiration.”
Horeshit. Leave me alone.
I so don’t want to be them right now!
“It happens to all of us.”
But it happened to me. Leave me alone!
“At least you made to Regionals.”
Yeah, and I just wasted the last year for that. Leave me alone.
“I’m so glad I know you! Honestly!”
Honestly! Fuck off! Honestly!
Oh bollocks, here comes Sevan…