TarnishedOctober 19, 2012
The look on my husband’s face said it all. Disappointment, disbelief, heartbreak. Maybe some anger even. If I were him I would have a lot of anger.
Yesterday it was announced that an age grouper tested positive for illegal substances. Read the name and the full report right here, this link also contains a link to the actual report from the USADA. I can’t speak on anything regarding the specifics of the case as I am not involved. What I can speak on… is how it affects one man. My husband.
He looked like he’d been punched when I told him. I handed him the phone so he could read it himself, and he shook his head. “I can’t even read it right now.”
Curt Eggers began this sport in his late thirties. He taught himself how to swim. In his first triathlon he was the last man out of the water. Five years later he came back and won that very race five years in a row. When I met Curt he had qualified for Age Group Nationals for the first time.
In the 12 years I have been married to this man I have supported him through 4 Ironman races. Including Hawaii. Including an amazing 9:54 performance at the age of 54. (Yes, there is a BIG age difference between us,1 2 years of marriage should say something about that). He’s a five time National Champion in both triathlon and duathlon. The accolades I can give this man would take three pages. He’s also the most humble.
The secret to the success of Curt Eggers is very simple…. consistent and smart training. I can count on one hand the amount of times he’s been injured. He doesn’t brag. He doesn’t own a heart rate monitor or a powermeter. He takes a HUGE off season every single year. He eats well. He doesn’t train in big groups. He doesn’t overtrain. He is always prepared when it comes to a race.
In 2007 at the World Championships in Germany….. he was drug tested. And he came out clean.
He puts in the work year after year after year. He lays a big base and builds off of it. It’s really quite simple.
I have listened to him speak of the athlete found guilty of doping, in admiration. He looked up to him. When that guy was racing, everyone else was racing for second place. How is that guy so good? He must just have incredible genes. man I wish I had that kind of natural talent.
I haven’t done it yet, but I am going to go through the results and see where he robbed Curt of a podium. A medal. has he?
Curt is disappointed. I haven’t spoken to him much about it yet but I am very interested to hear his reaction. All of his own hard work. Curt has always played by the rules. How does he feel about this? I have to guess he feels cheated. I have to guess that he wonders why. I have to guess that he feels hurt. Wouldn’t you?
It’s hard for me to wrap my head around why age groupers use performance enhancing drugs. What is there in it for us except a $3 medal? There is rarely prize money. Certainly not in WTC races. A few free products? Really? It’s worth damaging your health for…. that?
I think doping comes down to one thing. Yourself. And insecurity. If you feel that you HAVE to be the best…… if you feel that you CAN NOT lose…… so badly that you are willing to cheat….. that says something to me about the person you are. And how you feel about yourself. I think doping comes from a very deep insecurity that only standing on a podium can cure….. and that is a hollow fix. Not a real fix. Not a solution to your insecurity.
What’s the fix? A ban is nice I guess. But the damage is done. I believe in second chances in life….. but once a cheater…… always a cheater? I don’t know.
I think the fix is a good therapist. A good examination of your morals, ethics and values because if you are willing to dope, you clearly have none. If you are willing to cheat in sport…… how do you live your life?
All I know is that I am married to a man who works more consistently, smarter and harder than anyone I have ever met in my life. He achieves things the old fashioned way, nose to the grind. One step at a time. Has he been cheated out of some podiums? We will see.
But he is the guy who loses in this situation.