Great video…

This probably doesn’t belong on the typical triathlete’s blog, but who ever said I’m typical? The video below is from “Britian’s Got Talent”. It is the debute of Paul Potts who eventually goes on to win. If you watch this for the first time and don’t tear up, you have issues…

Click on “Read More” to watch Paul’s performance in the finale.

Here is Paul’s performance in the finale:

posted at 20:29:50 on 11/25/07 by Tony Rigdon – Category: General

Is Dying While Competing Worth it?

Once again, this past weekend an athlete died while competing in an endurance event. Ryan Shay, a nine time All-American, 2001 NCAA 10k champion, and the 2003 USA Half Marathon Champion, collapsed and died about five and one half miles into the Olympic Marathon Trials. At the time, Ryan was running with the lead group and showed no signs of any difficulty. Medical attention was almost immediate but nothing could be done to save him.

I had watched the whole Olympic Marathon Trials live on the internet and had been excited when Ryan Hall pulled away from the rest of the field, winning by several minutes and setting an Olympic Trials record in the process. Later that day I learned that while Ryan Hall was winning that race, his friend Ryan Shay had passed away after collapsing in the street behind him. As I read more, I learned that Ryan Shay had just gotten married in July to Alicia Craig who was herself a former 10k champion. He also leaves behind his parents, both of whom are cross country coaches, and seven siblings who are also runners.

I went out for a run the next day, a nine mile run through the rolling hills of Missouri. While I ran at a pace a little faster than half the speed they ran in the Olympic Trials, I thought about dying while competing. Ever since I almost died while competing, hearing that someone has actually died in a triathlon or run really hits me. Earlier this year at the Octomax Triathlon in Innsbrook Missouri, Kevin Hunt passed away while finishing the swim portion of the triathlon. I didn’t know Kevin and I had no idea anything had happened until I finished that race. When I heard the news all I could do was sit down and cry. Hearing about Ryan Shay brought that same flood of emotions boiling back up.

As I ran I thought about what I would want others to think if it were me. What if I had died from getting hit by a van? Or what if I died while out on a training run?

Then I realized, people die all the time, but not all people really live. If I were to give up competing because I might die while doing it, if I were to insulate myself from as many dangers as possible, I’ll still eventually die but I’ll never really truly live. Ryan Shay was living life to the fullest on Saturday and while it is sad and tragic that he is gone, it is made less so to know that he was doing what he loved when he went. To quit competing now would be to give up…

“To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.” – Steve Prefontaine

posted at 01:10:39 on 11/06/07 by Tony Rigdon – Category: General


Adam Beston wrote:

Nice entry Tony. I agree with you but something that I have been doing and always need to do more is improve my own safely while doing more. Like I have been riding with my lights on my bike on certain rides and always wear that obnoxious red/orange cutoff I have always had on every single ride. I need to be better about running and will start using one of those light clip on lights or something bc of DST. My cousin was killed this past year waiting for the bus at 6:00 am. She was dressed in black with her ipod on but the driver has a horrible record and most likely had seen her before and knew there was buses running. what I have struggled with is that I am unsure if my cousin had done something different or what the situation was (my aunt heard the collision (supposed to be 30mph since in town) from inside the house) if there would have been a different outcome. All I do know is that there would maybe be better piece of mind and justice done to the guy if she had been using better safety. Hopes this adds to the internal monolog you and others are having in your heads. Adam (Next race 8k turkey trot, btw I am working at Starbucks now.)
11/16/07 10:34:34