I have been flattered and humbled by the supportive letters, emails, and texts that I have received over the last week. I have especially liked getting pictures and notes of Type 1 kids that tell me how my skiing inspires them.
Reading these letters has made my disappointing performances easier to swallow. I have not raced like myself this year. I kept my training volume and intensity very high right through December and expected a huge surge in energy and speed once I cut the training down. The surge never came and I have been increasingly tired as time has gone on. This phenomena is especially frustrating because I executed my training plan exactly as I wanted to. I was never sick, I always responded positively to training, but I was not getting it done on the race tracks.
I trained harder this year than at any other point in my life. Perhaps that is the problem. I am not 25 years old anymore and I will have to adjust my training to allow for more recovery in the future.
I probably skied my last race of this Olympics yesterday. I am clearly far from my best right now and it would be fair to give fresher teammates a chance in the later races.
I have been a hair’s breath from the podium several times in my career. I wish that the publicity surrounding me now had been there for those performances. I want the world to know that diabetes does not have to hinder your performance or dreams and I have always thought that a medal would be a great way to show that. A person with diabetes should look beyond just participating, they should know that they can win too. I want to be clear that I do not believe my subpar performances here were attributable to diabetes. They came from a training plan that did not work for me this season. Many athletes miscalculate their training and become too tired to compete.
Diabetes is part of who I am just as being a four time Olympian is just part of who I am. I will never let my diabetes stop me from pursuing my goals. Being here in Sochi is the experience of a lifetime but I am already looking towards next year’s World Championships in Falun Sweden. The Olympics is awesome but skiing at my best will always be better.