That little voice in your head that whispers things is sometimes helpful. We all know that it sometimes tells us when we are getting into trouble.
This weekend is the opening weekend of the luge season for the club. Bailey and I are going to Lake Placid to slide on Sunday. This week the little voice has been whispering.
That whispering has been leading to some unhelpful self talk. That’s pretty typical for me anyway. I usually get nervous before I slide. It’s kind of like that nervous you get on a mountain bike before you try a move that has a decent chance in ending with you on the ground. But once you get going things usually settle down a little bit. But some events have helped to ramp that up a little bit this week.
First, there was the talk with my mtb coach about life, fast sports, and crashing. We got onto luge and had the typical conversation. Fast, scary, exciting….can’t you get hurt? So I shared my infamous video of one of my runs last year. Drew shared a video of a mtb crash he had in a race. (BTW. I talked with Drew about that crash. It looked like he was run over. He was. His comment was that it was OK because able to protect his bike. Clearly he has the same problem that some of us have.)
Then there was the Luge National Team that went to Sochi Russia to train for the first time on the track for next years Olympics. They were kind enough to post a video of some of the more interesting runs over the past 10 days. Here take a look. I’ve had some of those runs. Not on that track, and not at those speeds, but I have had them.
The little voice is going right now.
And that’s a bad thing if you are getting ready to slide.
You absolutely need to feel confident and positive when you slide. You have to. If you don’t, well you get tense, you sneak a peak when you are sliding, and bad things can happen.
Luckily I have about 48 hours to get myself together. I just need to remember that I was actually doing much better at the end of last year. I need to remember that I am simplifying a couple of things about my sliding. I need to remember the basics: head and shoulders back on the sled; body relaxed; smooth motions to drive the sled. (And I need to remember that it OK to struggle with this stupid, silly, difficult sport. That’s part of the fun.)
So its time to visualize some good runs. Here like this one. That’s Bailey. He’s better than I am. Bailey was already asking if I think the ice is going to be fast Sunday morning. (It IS going to be fast ice this weekend, BTW.)