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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Wordy Wednesday, Olympic trials

I have been to the Olympic trials twice now. Both occassions were different, and both quite exciting. I've never watched track and field events. My children were on baseball and softball teams in the spring, and the buzzing about the track was something I sometimes gazed upon while pitchers were warming up.

My daughter in law was an incredible runner. She has many awards and accolades, and ran professionally for Nike for seven years before retiring. She was in the team village in Bejing during the Olympics, and knows what it takes to perform at a high level.

These are things I knew, but never really understood. That is until I attended the trials. My first impression when I got to her hotel, was that immediately I was faced with many, many beautiful bodies. Both male and female. People in incredible shape, and to top it off 80% of them were extremely good looking. This has given me insight into my D.I.L's need to look good always. As she told me, "this is what I'm accustomed to. Now I see it.

To perform at this level, takes tons of dedication, endurance, and the desire to push yourself to new limits, and the pain that is involved in getting there.

This was my first peek at the track. Don't let those blue skies and fluffy clouds deceive you. It rained cats and dogs this day.

This is Ashton Eaton, a home grown Oregon boy. He is preparing to do the pole vault in his quest for decathalete. He not only went on to win the decathalon, but he broke the world record. It was so exciting, and the electricity of the crowd was amazing. Being present during such a momentous occassion was really special. I will watch the Olympics with new eyes this year.

 This is the giant size sign that the athletes see as they walk to enter the track area. This was the daughter in law's idea. She didn't especially want all the branding on it, but it's the sponsors that pay the bills!

 Walking around, and there goes a woman practicing her pole vault. Totally normal. :-)

I got to go visit the athletes tent that is set up with water, juices, fruits, and tv's to watch the trials. Sofas, comfy chairs, and table and chairs are all set up to make their waiting comfortable.  Outside of those, are medical tents, massage tents, and here is the area where the athletes can meet with trainers and take an ice bath.

This angled area is the "Nike experience" You can run against a simulated world class runner and see how you measure up, or go see the latest gear that Nike has to offer.

Steve Prefontaine, a famous Oregon runner, who died at the young age of 24 is on display.
 Here is the view of the clouds that dumped rain for quite some time.

This is the area for kids. They can test their vertical jump, run hurdles, run sprints, and see how it feels to compete.

Since my reason for being at the trials was to babysit, and it was raining so hard, baby girl and I sat in a tent nibbling wonderful treats, and watching the races on the jumbo tron. The conditions were brutal. Wind, rain, and not very warm. The athletes that won, deserve a real boost of pride to overcome the elements, but then again, London won't be warm, so perhaps Oregon was a good training ground.

DIL, baby girl, and Mo Green, former world's fastest man He broke the world record for the 100mm.

 The crowd hung around long after the last race. Waiting in the festival area for their local hero Ashton, to come out on stage and say a few words. Such a humble man. I am so impressed with him. I don't think it had sunk in yet, that he had broken a world record, and during such incliment weather. They should put an astric by his name in the record books. He did it through wind, rain, and sleet. A true champion.
The view as we left. such an exciting day. One for the records. Although my heart belongs to baseball, I'm happy that I have a new appreciation and excitment for track. Just goes to show....it's never too late to teach an old dog new tricks!

Live and Love...Out Loud


Gina @ Gigi Marie Photography said...

Oh how cool! What an amazing experience to be a part of.

Lori said...

Oh wow! What an event, a very exciting day. He is very calm standing there knowing he broke a world's record. I think I would have been jumping, crying, laughing, and calling someone on the phone! But that's me in total excitement!

Em S said...

Wow. That is pretty neat! My boss and her daughter had a chance to go to Omaha for the Swim Trials, but unfortunately weren't able to make it.

Leovi said...

Beautiful photos. Excellent Olympic series. Greetings.

Melanie said...

WOW! These are totally awesome man! I would have loved to be a fly on the wall here... a fly that snaps pictures)

Your daughter in law is ridiculously BEAUTIFUL! I remember the fabulous wedding photos you took of her, stunning.

Katie said...

Wow! This is so cool! Thank you for sharing all of this, it was definitely a new insight for me!

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