In Rio Christoph Harting proved how to perform on the big stage when he took Olympic discus gold with his final attempt. The German shares his top tips for in and outside the stadium.
There is a quote that fits perfectly: “Winners focus on winning. Losers focus on winners.” I don’t know whether this is an original quote from Conor McGregor, but he has certainly said this quote in the past.
Take your time. Or another way of saying it is, “Rome wasn’t built in a day”. In the same way, the perfect athlete isn’t made in a day either.
So, whenever you need the time to change your technique or to fix major issues, take your time and be aware that it can take years to reach your goal.
An example from my career came at the end of 2013 when I spoke with my coach, Torsten Lönnfors. We talked about changing my technique for the next season. We knew this may not be perfected in 2014 or 2015, but it would be in time for 2016 Rio Olympics. Looks like we were right!
You have to be obsessed by the idea of being the best in history. If you are not, you probably won’t make it to the top. To use my example, I am obsessed with the world record [of 74.08m set by German Jürgen Schult in 1986]. Some say it is out of reach, but for me, it is a challenge. My desire is to one day throw a world record nobody can beat.
I was once told as a high performance athlete bringing your private problems to work is not an option. There is no place for mistakes and no place for emotions because as soon as your thoughts and focus drifts, you are no longer devoting 100 per cent to the task.
There is no perfect technique and each thrower has their own individual technique, so this makes it very hard to offer a technical tip. The point is, there is no shortcut to becoming better. There is no sheet of paper telling you what’s the right way to move. You have to find your own movement to improve your technique.
Really great food takes times to cook. Of course, it’s annoying to cook sometimes. But to be honest, what tastes better? A meal rich of nutrients chosen and made by yourself or ordering a fat double cheese burger with fries?
In my quest to be competitive and the best I can be it is important to fuel the body properly to allow me to feel faster, lighter and stronger and be competitive.
If you are going by foot, bicycle, car or motorbike, don’t think just about yourself. Always try to see the point of view of every driver, pedestrian or cyclist around and try to figure out what they could possibly do wrong in the next couple of seconds. After a while it becomes normal to think that way, then if someone else makes a mistake you are prepared.
There is no specific tip I can give here. In my opinion this world is full of wonderful places that are worth seeing. If you’ve got time and pocket change, Dubai is worth a visit.
Social media tip
As some will know, I don’t have a social media account. Neither Facebook, nor Twitter, or Instagram. In my opinion we are too careless in offering our private lives to anybody that we might not really know in person. Also, there is a whole world do be discovered outside of your smartphone or computer. When I was young we got to know each other by talking to each other in person.
Well, I wouldn’t consider myself as a dating pro, and I probably have no idea what I am talking about, but I am happily married and I’ve got to say the best advice is to be yourself. Not the creepy you, but the charming one.