He is about to die. Only a few seconds to live. Just enough time for one last stand. He looks at his closed ones and says: “Witness me”.
Like you, I went to see the movie Mad Max and I cam out of there…stunned. Certainly for the same reasons as you but also because this line shook my deepest thoughts.
“Witness me”, yeah, that sounds cool. But in the movie, they don’t say “Witness me, I am flash” or “Witness me, I train like a beast” or even “Witness me, I am going to be world champion”.
No, in the movie, it’s “Witness me”…then silence…then one last heroic stand.
That might be why I didn’t write here for so long, why my cell phone is always turned off and why I now rarely spend more than 20 minutes straight on my computer. To become this Olympic hero I always talk about, I believe I must attain a level of focus, devotion and discipline I am yet to reach.
Directly or indirectly, Mad Max helped me learn something else. Haver you seen what the truck driven by Charlize Theron looks like??!! The War Rig. Days after the movie, I thought: “Greg, to pursue this quest, you’re going to ask something unreal out of your body. If you want your body to help you win that gold medal in 2020, you’re gonna have to love it and take care of it as if it was the War Rig: an invincible war machine”.
In June, I took the start of my 2nd race of the season. A good swim, a good bike, two awesome transitions and a run where…just like most vehicles in Mad Max, I exploded and finished agonizing. I drove back home right away, disappointed by my finish.
I woke up the next morning and something new went through my brain.
In fact, after my injury in November 2014, I got depressed for 1 month. Then after my DNF in Cannes, in April, I got depressed for 2-3 days.
But this time, I woke up and for the first time in my life, I thought: “Phewww, you failed so many times, why give a damn about this time, just move on and prepare yourself for today’s 3h bike session”.
I told you over and over that you must never give up. Not because you will never fail. Not because you’re so talented. Not because you have an iron will. No, you will never give up because each time you fail, you’ll just ignore it, be indifferent to it, skip it and move on. When I meditate, I often repeat myself this sentence: “I perform with gigantic faith never mind the circumstance, the people, the emails, the events,,,”
Then, later on that same day, I could see the ranking of the race. 58th overall and 12th in my age category. Great news because it’s the first time I crack the top 20!
Then I went for a 10 day mini Tour de France between Carcassonne, Dordogne and Lyon. It was my last big training block before the upcoming European Championship where I trained for 20 straight days, at one point. Everything is in tune now. I couldn’t be in a better position. My training, my rituals, my weight, my name on my tri-suit, my sleep, my state of mind, my body. All is good.
I have a list of key words and key thoughts to use and boost me at some point of the races but you can be sure that after I drop my bike at T2 and start running, I am gonna think: “Witness me”.
I am just done reading one of the 10 books I have by the side of my bed. It’s “Eleven rings” from NBA coach Phil Jackson. The very last sentence of the book made me think a lot. So much that now, every time someone tells me about a situation, I repeat this sentence as an advice. Here it is:
“The soul of success, is to accept what is”
I am leaving you here. Look at yourself in the mirror and be the witness of what’s truly inside of you. Now, regarding the rest, all those stuff you cannot control. Just accept it.