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Reese Hoffa

My closing thoughts on the competition and my time in Beijing

Fourth-Place Medal

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Shot putter Reese Hoffa of Team USA is blogging for Fourth Place Medal from Beijing, where he just completed his competition. Check here for his full journal.

Saturday, 8/16. So I had this competition on the 15th and I went into it thinking that I was sure to medal as long as I focused on what I worked on this year and what I worked on in practice for the last two weeks. Well the best-laid plans do not always work out the way you think and it is what you do when they do not work out that defines you.

It’s definitely not a victory for me. But a lot of positive came out of it. I started off very slow. I hit a throw that got me in the final. I made the Olympic final. So now I just go back and do what I normally do and get ready for the next season.

I think after not getting the medal in the shot put and having to walk in front of the media and have to answer the question about what went wrong and how I feel is very tough for me. I know deep down inside that I did the best I could with what I had but it is hard to express to others what I did not have on that day. I guess this is one of those life lessons that can only be learned from experience and not being told.

For me I have been on top of the world of shot putting for two years and on top of the mountain I could see the people that are coming for me. All I thought I had to do is fight and I could beat anyone, which is not the case and when I fell from the top of the mountain it hurt really badly.

For a second there I though I might never get up and try to climb the mountain again, but I am Reese and I love to climb mountains. Looking at the bright side of things I know how to throw far, and for where I sat it will be no time before I am on top of the throwing world again. For now I will go home and sleep in bed and watch some TV and I will start to plan my assault on the shot putting world. When I come back I will be better than what I was the previous two years. It will be really scary for all throwers that beat me on the 15th and to the others that were not there.

As for Beijing it was nice to come back and see how things have changed and in some ways stayed the same from my last trip in 2001. Back then I had lots of fun looking around Beijing learning about its history and walking on grounds that have stood for centuries. I am not sure if I will ever have a chance to come back, but I will take with me tons of pictures and a lot more memories. I guess this is where I say good-bye - my journey has ended and I will talk to you guys in four years.

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