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Resentful or Driven?-The battle of two minds


‘This morning, it was all about finding the strength to endure the bitter- in order to taste the sweet.’

 Resentful or Driven?

The battle of two minds


Nicole Martin


The resentful me tastes the bitter but not the sweet when the alarm clock prematurely kicks me out of bed.

It’s 0500 HRS.

‘Come on- swallow it babe, are you a man or a mouse?’

‘A mouse!’

‘Well put your shoes on mouse, grab your towel, and walk out the door’

Today, my driven self is determined to slam it’s weaker opponent into checkmate.
How does it happen this way?
I don’t know- My desire to be ‘better’ has always exceeded my resentment of the task.
 Sometimes I wish this ‘drive’ would relent and allow me to relax, but it’s because of IT, that I get up and walk out the door, swimming kit in hand.
The short journey to training proves challenging-my reaction time clearly sluggish;
“Geez, wake up girl- Somebody slap me”-my mind pleads

Resentful me re-appears after a short recess, when it observes we are not alone but have company of a distinct astrological nature.
Still pinned brilliantly in the night sky, the radiant moon is a terrible reminder that it is in fact-



The chill in the air stings my bare feet, and solidifies the frown on my face. Yikes, an army of goosebumps stand to attention on the surface of my skin, proudly announcing their presence.

My reaction?

My foot deepens it’s relationship with the accelerator.

Resentment once again obscures clarity but my ‘driven self’ quickly engages, utilising yet another tool in it’s repertoire-the art of  distraction-I twist the black nob of the car radio and am instantly greeted by an old man drowning in intellect and steadfast opinions, babbling on about the economic situation in China in monotone waves-I mean, where do you find these people?

I hobble bare foot over the cold, rocky gravel-my tactile feet once cozy and relaxed from slumber are now uncomfortably awake as they negotiate the edgy footpath.

I pick up the pace in aim of expediting the whole process.

The quicker I’m in, the quicker I’m out.

The water is cool at first- but a good old fashioned whinge, a few laboured laps, and I quickly adjust.

Familiarity strikes as I re-acquaint myself with the black and the blue.

My body is heavy.

My form of a few months ago, all but gone, but I know, discipline will regain it.

Making a home outside the perimeter of comfort, cursing the darkness, resenting the alarm clock, facing the constant urge to give up, and enduring the battle between two very different states of mind- resentment and drive, is all part of the Journey toward achievement.

This morning, it was all about finding the strength to endure the bitter- in order to taste the sweet.


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Posted in My training Diary, Story


Flynn focusing on the task
Flynn focusing on the task

It was one of those days today, when nerves upset my stomach.

Flynn has been training extremely hard the last few months, putting in the km’s in the pool to attempt to make a Queensland State Championships Qualifying time.

He’s close, but he hasn’t made it yet. The qualifying times are rough. Some of the toughest in the world, with Queensland possessing arguably the largest selection of elite swimmers globally.

It’s mentally challenging to overcome the disappointment of falling short when you’ve put in the time, which is why I was so nervous for him.

Today, he was presented with an opportunity. The first A qualifying long course meet of the season.

The race? -100 m Breaststroke

He was going to try. His coach warmed him up and concocted a race plan.

In order to give himself a chance at all, he was going to have to swim a 2 second PB for 50 metres. However this was a 100 metre race.

A PB for 50, and then keep going almost as fast in the second lap.

Flynn has never done this.

My stomach was rumbling, my hands shaking, but he looked calm. Good, or maybe not???

I looked over at Michael as he walked up to the blocks on the whistle. He nodded his head.

He needed a time of 1:26 to make it. He’s swum a 1:28 before, but that was in a short course pool which is technically faster, as there are more turns, which can give you an advantage.

‘Don’t worry Flynny, whatever happens, you have more than given it your best shot’- I thought.

He was focused. I was having a heart attack.

The gun went…he was off.

Good start…come on Flynn, come on.

He approached the 50 m Mark.. He needed to swim it in 40 seconds, I checked my watch…39.02, he’s on target. Oh my goodness I can’t stand it.

Go Flynn, Go.

His coach began to whistle every time his head came up to help with timing. If he slowed down at all, he wasn’t going to make it. He needed to do a solid swim back, and finish the last 15 metres fast. Was he fast enough? His glide looked good, but those last few strokes can make or break.


He touched.

Did he? Didn’t he?

I peered at the official time.

He needed a 1:26:00

A flipping 1:26 FLAT