Adventure-a-Day/ London/ Thoughts on travel

Lessons from Olympic Rowers, and a Cheap Hotel near Kew Gardens: Adventure-a-Day #10

I don’t personally learn a lot of lessons from athletes and sports, but their persistence is one thing I could use more of.

broad, flat river on a grey day, one rowing team coming toward the boat at Kew Pier

British rowing teams practiced for years like this team on the Thames (Photo credit Jill Browne)

The British Olympic rowing teams won nine medals at the Games this summer, breaking their all-time record.

I was crossing Kew Bridge when I saw some rowers practicing on the River Thames. (Just click on the picture to enlarge it.)

It was February, early in the morning, and so heavily overcast the sun didn’t show up for a few days.

To win an Olympic medal you must have to go out like this almost every day, rain or shine. Beyond persisting with the daily practice, you also have to know exactly why you are doing it, and you have to really want to win, more than anything in the world.

Persistence + Purpose + Passion = Success

We don’t all need to strive for the kind of success that athletes want, but unless you can put those three ingredients together, you may find yourself with a fourth P: Plateau.

There’s nothing wrong with a plateau as long as it’s where you want to be. For example, I’m happy being a mediocre swimmer but I’d like to be a better writer.

Olympic athletes might inspire me┬áto push myself harder, but if I want inspiration to help me accept what I am today, and what I’m capable of right this minute, I need to look elsewhere.

So much for the philosophy.

The travel tip from this day?

There is a cheap and clean Travelodge hotel at Kew Bridge.

 

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