The Bell Lap

  • Published
  • By Col. Ken Stefanek
  • 39th Air Base Wing vice commander
In my last commentary I wrote that getting ready for a UCI was like a marathon, not a sprint... Anyone who has ever watched a long-distance race knows that as the runners start the last lap a bell rings to remind them that the time to conserve energy is over and the time to begin their sprint to the finish is upon them. In case you weren't listening Monday morning, our last lap bell was ringing loudly, meaning it's time for us to begin our sprint to the finish in our UCI prep. 

As we begin our final lap, it would help us remember the lesson taught to us by the great runner/hurdler Edwin Moses. For those of you who are not familiar with sports history, Edwin Moses was a world class runner who won 122 consecutive races over the span of 10 years against the best competition in the world, winning two Olympic Gold Medals in the process. Moses claimed that the one thing that set him apart as he came down the stretch was that he was able to maintain his form better than any of his competitors. I think it is interesting that he didn't claim that he was faster or tried harder than his competitors, but he said that his form set him apart. 

How this lesson applies for us is that as we get closer to the finish line in our UCI prep, it is not enough for us to just work harder, but we need to be smart in how we expend our energy. We should all be intimately familiar with our programs and as a result should know where we'll get the most pay back for the effort we expend. Focus on these areas first and fix the things we've identified as needing to be fixed. Another area to focus energy on is general appearance/bulletin boards and things that ensure a good first impression. The bottom line is that by being smart about how finish our UCI prep we can ensure our extra effort will result in a big UCI win and not just a pass.