Living Your Own Olympic Dream

I’m always so inspired when watching the Olympics.  The stories are incredible but I prefer watching the competition the most.

I’ve had the honor to work with 3 cross country Olympic skiers and  I know of their struggles to get to the Olympics.  It seems to be constant adversity in their quest to make the team.  There is also many joyous moments along the way.

The thing I see with the Olympic athletes I’ve met and worked with is that they never give up  when the going gets tough.  I think some times we give up or get frustrated when we are ever so close to reaching the dream or achieving the goal.

I remember working with my first Olympic athlete Suzanne king.   Her and her husband Mark would come up to the St. Croix Valley area and train with us die hards.  They would stay at my little house I had in St. Croix Falls and we’d have some great times working out and eating lots of great food.

They would live on a little bit of nothing and sleep overnight for days at a time in that old black 4 door volvo.  They seemed to live on oatmeal and banana’s 3x a day.  There isn’t any money in cross country skiing unless you win the Birkie which Caitlin Compton did a few years back and it paid the down payment for their house in the cities.

Chase that dream.

I thought Caitlin was a shoe in for the Olympics and was stunned she didn’t make hte team.  Her  husband Brian Gregg made the mens cross country team and placed 45th in his first event in Sochi.  That was a very respectable race.  Caitlin has an incredible amount of energy and in her dissapointment she has been so gracious and supportive of her husband.  You can follow their journey on facebook.   Kare 11 did a great interview with them a few weeks back and they really walk their talk about the journey and living the lifestyle.  It’s fun to see all  the cool things they have done with the youth of north Minneapolis mentoring young kids to a healthy way of living .

The olympic athletes I have been associated with are driven, never quit, love what they do, and have a passion for helping others be there best.  What an incredible journey they and all the other athletes have had.  This must be the icing on the cake for them.

I feel like training year round for a few cross country ski races is my mini olympics and I love my lifestyle.  It’s healthy, fun, and I try to inspire others to go for their dreams.  I could barely stand up on a pair of cross country ski’s 30 years ago.  Now it’s a breeze but the work that goes into the training and competing is a lot of discipline and focus.

I guess that’s with anything you are passionate about.  I think that’s the key, find a passion and go for it.  If you have lost your health and you know you need to get it back then I’m your guy.  I can show you how and what to do but you still need to take the action.

Anything is possible if you just stick with it.  Losing your health takes time and getting it back takes time.  It took me 3 years of skiiing before I felt pretty good on the ski’s.  I’m learning a new disipline, classic skiing which is the traditional way of cross counrty skiing.  I get decent results but my technique needs some major work on the hills so I’m more efficient and  don’t have to expend so much energy.  I know it’s going to take a few more years until I get it.  It just doesn’t happen but when it does it’s so cool.

What are your dreams, what are your goals?  I was reading where most americans have no goals?  If you look at my wax room in my basement I put pictures up and quotes, and write my goals down so I see them everytime I wax my ski’s.  I may  not reach all of them but I make  most of them.  It gives me something  to strive for.

It’s not really so much the goal that is important but it’s the journey along the way.  That’s the best part of it when I reflect back.  I have weight loss patients I’m working with and all of them want to lose weight.  They all have a certain weight they want to get at.  I know they will get there and they know they can never go back to the poor lifestyle of poor eating choices.  I’m sure they will look back at the process of losing thee weight as being one of a remarkable journey.  I focus them on what it takes to get healthy first , and once they do, that’s when the weight comes off.  Until next time, go out and live your own Olympic dream.

Riley Edling at barnebirkie

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