Everything has a start and an end. In almost all cases the start is the hardest part to overcome. The start is the most stressful part, and it takes time to get past it. Starting out as a freshman in college, there is a lot to get used to; many things to change and to be aware of all at once. Being aware at the start is the most important. You must be aware of everything so you don’t miss your stroke, the most important stroke, the one that starts you off.
Once you’re off you can do anything but stop, you can’t stop, if you stop you fall behind and catching up is a hard battle to win. Remember though not to run yourself thin. Learn to pace your battle and conserve your energy. There are plenty of things in life, and we need to enjoy them while we still can. Stay focused at all times though, catch water and pull, don’t stop until the finish.
You can’t see your finish, but you see all that is going past you, pay attention to the white buoys, when they turn orange your stretch is about to begin. The coxswain yells “300, this is what we worked for gentlemen, take it up.” Now it’s here to the finish line, every bit of energy comes out on these last 30 strokes, quitting is not an option. The people on the shore are chanting your hometown and boat name, you want to look but you can’t. “Power 10 guys,” 100 meters to go, our hardest gets even harder. It starts to hurt more and more, stroke after stroke. 10 strokes seem like 10 years, then you finish.
Everything has a finish, but you decide how.
“You notice one thing at the finish line, the boats that lose look tired, but the one that worked harder, looks like they can row back and do it again.”
Head Coach of The Westerville Crew Rowing Team.