April 05, 2010

One Year

Almost exactly one year ago I made my way from North Vancouver to Port Alberni on Vancouver Island via my road bike. The distance was just over 100km each way, and in late April the weather could not have been better for the journey. I made the jaunt to join my extended family in congratulating a first cousin on his University Graduation, which was to be followed shortly thereafter by an overseas excursion of four full months.

I had a wonderful weekend, as I always do when we all find an excuse to get together like that. As I was enjoying the ninety minute ferry crossing I noticed a few things. First and foremost, as I was clad in a black head to toe spandex cycling suit, I can be perceived as strange from just outside of my 'lifestyle circle'.

In North Vancouver I would not garner a second glance. Upon a ferry full of 'normal people' I felt like I would encounter fewer stares had I gone completely naked! I disappeared into the newsstand and perused all the outdoor magazines. Within a few minutes I had come across articles in three different publications either written by or about people I knew fairly well within the scene.

Tracy Garneau brandished the cover of the Canadian Running Magazine 'Trail Special'. Jen Segger was featured in another, and The Mallory Family had a huge write up in a third magazine. I do not know the family intimately, but I did get to meet them while competing against them at the Raid The North Extreme expedition adventure race in The Queen Charlotte Islands in 2007. They became the first FAMILY to scale Mt. Everest together last year! There were also a few other pictures of or by people I recognized/knew throughout these magazines.

My first reaction was. Wow, I've managed to dig myself pretty deep into this scene within five short years. In 2004 I didn't know a single soul within this world because I myself was not a part of it in any way, shape, or form. Yet there I was in 09 picking up magazine after magazine and going, "Hey I know her!" "Hey I know him!", "Hey I recognize them!" It was a pretty cool sensation, and realization for me.

The very next thought I had, as selfish as it is, was 'Hey, I'm doing some decent things within the scene right now, I want in on this stuff!'

By the time I hopped back in the saddle to pedal my way off of the boat I had but one thought going through my head. "Just keep doing what you're doing. Your time will come. Just keep believing in where you're going and doing exactly what you're already doing."

I just returned from an Easter family get together in Nanaimo, on Vancouver Island this past Saturday night. Almost a year to the day since I had these thougts. I kept doing what I was doing. I kept training my ass off and continually improving, never settling for less, and recently Derrick Spafford out of Ontario contacted me and asked if he could do an interview for Canadian Running Magazine...and there it was! Almost a year to the day, after I vividly remember standing in the EXACT same spot and simply saying to myself,

"Just keep doing what you're doing. Just keep believing in where you're going."


PS You currently have about a 1 in 30 chance of winning a BRAND NEW pair of Montrail Mountain Masochist trail shoes IF you donate just $5 (or more) to Right To Play via this page


Jude said...

cheers Gary... true to these words.

“The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well, and doing well whatever you do without thought of fame. If it comes at all it will come because it is deserved, not because it is sought after.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American Poet 1807-1882

i had similar feeling when i came across your interview, truly inspiring!

Tom Craik said...

saw your Q and A in the mag. It almost makes you sound like you know what you're doing. Words to follow. I'm glad I was able to join you on one of your adventure runs with friends. Helen's was an epic. Another great step in your career, Robbins. Congrats.

LizzieB said...

Ironically just read that article this morning... you continue to inspire and motivate me. As you were wowed and awed last year by the people you knew of and recognized in magazines, I am by you (and Jen Segger and Jon Brown).

Although I have no illusions of being called for interview next year.

Nice work!

mrf0rd said...

Great article! Obviously, keep doing what you're doing!

Deanna Stoppler said...

Inspiration. You rock dude!

Boris T said...

Very motivating, keep it up man!

garobbins said...

Thanks guys! I know I say this quite a bit, but it really means a lot to me to have the support of so many within the scene. I really appreciate all the positive feedback and am truly gracious for every little bit of it.


Bryan Tasaka said...

And the MOMAR LOVES the choice of photo!!! Nice work, Gary!

Anonymous said...

Awesome stuff, Gary! Congratulations!!! Is the interview online anywhere?

All Day!

garobbins said...

Yeah I thought you might like that B!

Unfortunately I can't find an online link to it yet and the only scanned version of it I had was from a friend who cut off part of it!


Scott said...

Thats awesome Gary, and to top it off, i just received my Trail runner magazine today, and there is a 2 page article on Tamsyn in it.

Good luck at the Diez Vista.

garobbins said...

Yeah thanks Scott!
It wasn't meant to be the tone of her original interview but it's how it all unfolded after the fact. She's been running for the last few weeks finally and though she doesn't seem to see it she's getting stronger every day!

Hope the TRR training is going well!