Most Lane 8 (Eight) Readers Are Too New To Realize That Associating With Excellence Can Take A Decade For World Class Results

The night before jeff noel's first World Championship race, the "Senior" Olympics in Finland, 2009

If any of you (Donna, Craig, Bob and a few others for sure) were with jeff noel and Lane 8 early on, you know the story of noel’s childhood dream to represent the United States in the Olympic games. Who knew in 2009, he’d be 50 when it happened? Sure it took a decade of preparation, and sure he could only run 100 meters a day when he began. Quit? Never!

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Tiger Woods Told Me

Hey, just know upfront that this post is waaaaaaay longer than I like to write.  So, since it’s rare, would you please consider indulging yourself?

May, 2008.  Nearly 18 months ago, just before Tiger Woods went to California to win the US Open and in the process, injure his knee, I had three brief opportunities to speak with Tiger.

First I asked Tiger Woods, “What one piece of advice would you give to anyone who wanted to be world-class?”  Tiger said, “Out work ’em!”

As he was getting up to walk away I asked, “Do you ever get tired of being famous?”  Like I stated in yesterday’s post, Tiger said, “Since day one.”

As luck would have it, Tiger and I crossed paths a second time, “Tiger, if you had it to do all over again, would you go the famous route?”  Tiger said matter-of factly, “It’s not about being famous, it’s about winning!”

I thanked Tiger for his time and wished him luck and success on his rehab and upcoming US Open.

At the end of each Gold’s Gym workout, I finish up in a small, carpeted room (maybe 16′ x 16′) to work on some core exercises.  The last of these core exercises is called a plank.  Similar to doing a pushup, face down, but you’re on your elbows and you simply hold a stiff position for one minute.

When I look up to leave and pick up my son in the Kiddie Gym, who is lying next to me but Tiger Woods. I mean, what are the odds?

I promised myself I wouldn’t “bother” him anymore.  And besides, I had less than a minute to make it to the Kiddie Gym before it closed.  No time to talk, even if I wanted to.

With my son (7) on my back (he couldn’t walk this day), and sweat pouring down my face, we head to the Gym exit.

But wait.

A voice inside my head, “You will regret this for the rest of your life if you don’t do it.  You’ve been coming here for two years and you’ve never seen Tiger Woods, and you may never see him again.”

“Do it, or you’ll regret it for the rest of your life”, I whisper forcefully to myself.

We reverse direction, and find Tiger.  At this point I’ve convinced myself that I don’t care what he thinks, all I care about is not living with regret.

“Tiger, I’m not afraid of no.  I have big dreams about things I want to accomplish.  I’d love to have 30 minutes of your time.  We could meet for coffee somewhere.”

“Give me your number”, he said politely.

While Tiger has never called me, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that I am not living with regret.

I hope Tiger can say the same thing.

Lane 8 What You Should Know

Can’t explain how my brain works, all I can tell you is that it is constantly turning, churning and burning.  So, this morning, like every morning after the initial routine is done, the process of writing five daily blogs begins.

Lane 8 is third in the order in which I write the five daily blogs. Stay with me, there’s a point to this.

Arriving at the WordPress Blog admin page, I create “a blank sheet of paper“.  Then I pause, think about what to write and get started.  Usually, something from the day before, or something from today’s agenda, is where the inspiration comes from.

Today is a bit more unusual. Click here to see what inspired today’s post.  Make it a GREAT day. It’s completely up to you, isn’t it?

Level Of Fitness @ Lane 8?

Yesterday’s Lane 8 blog post ended with me promising to share today the level of fitness that was unknowingly gained on the journey to become a world class Master’s athlete.

And by the way, the goal was never to become a world class Master’s athlete.  The goal was, and always will be, about getting and staying healthy to contend with the hereditary predisposition to both physical and mental illnesses.  I am, after all, 50 years old.  🙂

Here’s a jeff noel midlife You Tube video which highlights the strength of the body’s core.  And just before heading to Lahti, Finland for the 2009 WMA Master’s Track & Field World Championships, I increased the time from “20-count” (in this clip) to 30-count:

Guarantee you, if you try to put both feet up at a 90-degree angle, you won’t be able to hold it for more than a “2-count”. Don’t believe me? Try it. Carpe diem!

Lane 8 Credentials, Two Lists

Lane 8 FAQ’s:  What is it?  Why are you doing it?  How do you get to go?

Here are two lists of my “credentials”:

  1. Consistently run faster than the USATF All-American Standard of Excellence
  2. Compete at the State & National levels (and do really well)
  3. Figure out how to pay for expenses, time & money, to go to Finland
  4. Have enough guts to do the impossible
  5. Run as fast as USATF establishes as the age group world-class equivalent
  6. Indomitable will
  7. God’s Grace

That is the short list, of the big requirements.  There are other, lesser criteria, but I’ll spare you the details.  But, if you really want to know:

  1. Out work ’em
  2. Run hard
  3. Run far
  4. Stretch
  5. Strength train
  6. Core train
  7. Stay healthy
  8. Repair injuries
  9. Nutrition
  10. Rest
  11. Continuous Improvement
  12. Inspiration
  13. Balance
  14. Family Involvement
  15. Commitment
  16. Tenacity
  17. Perseverance
  18. Pray

There.  Any questions?  Carpe diem, jeff noel, out in Lane 8  🙂