The great thing about this is, and not to pump my own tires, but I feel like I'm not maximized yet. I feel like I can still run faster, jump higher, which I think makes it special. Hopefully, going to London, I'll be welcomed into the decathlon community.
When I was a junior and an up-and-coming athlete, I don't think I looked to anyone for inspiration. I was so busy trying to improve myself and learning these new events and learning about the decathlon in general that I didn't really have time to focus on anyone else.
As athletes, we love to say, 'Just one more; I'm going to figure it out on this next one.' It's tough to pull back the reins and do what is smart physically, listening to your body and always ending a workout or session feeling like I could have done more.
The first sport I played was baseball. I remember being on the Little League team and someone pitching the ball to me for the first time. I was ready to no longer hit the ball off the tee, and an adult pitched it to me underhand.
Even if you see a great performance, it's not always great getting there. There are injuries... Intrinsically or unconsciously, people understand that - people see those performances, and they know there are stories behind that.
You're just constantly battling this thing that is telling you, 'I don't think I can do it.' I think we all have it. When you're fresh and alert, you can easily put those doubts down. But when you're tired, they easily come up to the surface.
I dated my first girlfriend for, like, two weeks in high school, and when you're in high school, it's so much different. I wanted to hang out with my friends and play video games and play paintball and do guy stuff. Girls were never around for my friends group.