fredag 20. september 2013

The Formula For Success

The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will. - Vince Lombardi

What is the formula for success? Sometimes people will ask you; "What have you done to get where you are today?". Is success a mindset or a journey? Or how do one define success?

It's difficult to put a definition on success. I would say it's easier to define a journey, but can't you say success is a journey as well?
In my mind, the entire concept of success is a journey. There is no specific finish line when I think of success, as it is a matter of goals. You set your goals and then if you reach them, you have success.

How can a person keep having a success if you set only one goal?

I would think the best way to do this, is to break down the word itself; SUCCESS:
So, lets try and hopefully I can shed some light on my understanding of success.
See Your Goal:
In all training you do, there is always one or more goals that you want to reach. One of the first things to remember when setting a goal, is to be smart about it. Set goals that are S.M.A.R.T:
There is no point in setting goals that are unrealistic both in achievement and time. Get a full understanding of what your goal is, and work towards it systematically.
Understand The Obstacles:
How one person see a challenge or a problem, is most of the time different from what other people see. For example, when people look at my running, they might say that I need to focus on tighter turns, better control and maybe decrease the speed to ease my handling to make control easier.
But I see different obstacles; How can I get control without losing speed? Do I want to sacrifice the speed in a turn for tighter turns?
My point is that some challenges can be the same, but people's perception of it might be totally different.
Wouldn't it be nice if every situation that was difficult, came with a warning? Or that dogs were sold with a big notification that it might be hard?
Create A Positive Mental Picture:
The first or most important thing when you want to do something, anything really, is to say: Yes, I can do this!
There is no point in doing alot of work on something you deep down don't believe will work in the end. Once you get you mind and focus on the positive things, everything seems brighter.
Clear Your Mind Of Self Doubt:
Like I mention above, there is no point in setting goals when you deep down don't believe you can reach them yourself.
 Are you good enough? If you always question yourself and never try, you never just go for it, how will you know? The worst that can happen, is that you find out that you need more practise.
Embrace The Challenge:
Is it difficult? Do you find elements that is challenging? Is the course not the way you are used to handling? BRING IT ON!!! - is my motto there.... I will do my best to work with it. If I fail, I fail. Then I have something I can strive to finish.
Stay On Track:
Remember your goals!! That is the most important thing on this point, in my eyes, just keep remembering your goals.
As long as you keep to this, you will stay on track towards success.
Show The World You Can Do It:
When you get it to work, people will start to notice you. You will succeed in courses, your training method will start to pay off and people will respect your journey.
This was my thoughts on the formula on success.. So who knows, maybe it will work for you, maybe it won't. But what have you got to lose?
Tommy, Leija & Niili

onsdag 11. september 2013

Nordhordland Competition = 31aug - 01sep 2013 =

Flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. - Douglas Adams

After a great summer holiday with a lot of new impressions, a relative understanding of the concept of balance and a expectation on doing some good agility, we had signed up for the competition in Nordhordland with the judge Jan Egil Eide.

Since I still had some vacation before getting back to work, I started the trip to Bergen early friday afternoon and arrived in Os at Simon and Dorte around 17.00. Luckily I wasn't going any further, as there had been a major accident in downtown Bergen, causing big traffic jam.

On saturday morning I started with A2 and had a great course walk, my only problem was that I was trying to incorporate things I don't master yet, which ended badly for my part.

My expectations for the weekend felt like something crashing, kind of like this:
I haven't talked a lot about my goals, but I've mentioned my ultimate goal of having fun. However, when you do something, anything actually, you always want to do your best.
My goals is something we can come to on a later time, but what's important to know now, is that I did not live up to my expectations on the runs this weekend. I will be the first to admit that my thoughts can get in the way of everything sometimes, and this can be both positive and negative.
Story of the weekend was in general just like a movie title:
Tommy trying stuff he doesn't know!
Anyways, let's get on with the courses.
This was a super cool course to run, that demands focus during the entire course, otherwise the dog runs off doing other things ;)

It all went super good until obstacle 11, where I wanted to try wrong-sided weaves. It gives me a fault in there and we just continued. This gives us a DQ in this run. Results are below;
Unfortunately I don't have anything more of a video from this run, than the small session below. This is what comes of trying to give a simple job to someone from Bergen ;) hehe....

Second run of the day was Jumping. It was a fun filled action course, which demanded 100% focus on every turn. Unfortunately I did not manage this. My timing was not up to par, turning was crap and directions for the dog was not present. As a result of my poor handling, Leija actually refuses a tunnel and jumps over the long jump. Luckily she wasn't injured, as the long jump had the #5 bar standing in the course as well. Ah well, a DQ written down on this one as well:
Video of this run is also below, and as you've understood; people from Bergen have a tendency to talk during filming ;)
Video link below:

As always, it seems my Youtube does not want to cooperate with my blogspot, so I have to put the links to youtube only.
This was a super fun course. Even though my head weren't on it's place, we had fun none the less.. Leija closed her ears from obstacles 2->3 and had a wide turn. My body posture was all out of place, and I started her in the wrong place. Still, Leija had a great speed and we came back from the tunnell and took #4 without problem. But then Leija somehow decided on going on the outside of #5 and jumped the long jump the wrong way, giving us the DQ.
I am super happy with the speed of the weaves, we had a good turn on #8 -> #9, even if I slipped because of my bad body-balance.
Third and last run of the day was the open jump course. Here we atleast managed to get a finish, even though we had a refusal, we finished with good speed and okey handling.
Movie of the can be seen at the link below:
If I look at the course compared to my handling, I see a few timing mistakes and I could also improve the turning during the course. My biggest point, however, is that I seem to be a bit slow in my running. Leija has a speed, with the refusal, at 4,40 m/s. Could I maybe become faster if I run faster, or do I loose control?
Well, let's move into Sunday.
Sunday started with alot of confusion and loss of focus for my part. During our trip to the competition, Simon and me drove past a accident which happened to be a contestant that we knew. The entire car was destroyed, but luckily both her and her dogs was okey. Someone had a guardian angel in that crash....
When we arrived, the course walk for grade 2 agility had already started, but the judge was so nice that he gave us some extra time to walk it. Unfortunately I couldn't manage to reset my mindset and it was a "half-ass" effort by myself.

Course was a SUPER FUN course. It should have been easy.. Should have!! - That is one of the most annoying comments I ever make. "I should have" is always the start of something bad for me, but then again; I should have been on the other side.
I decided to start on the "upper-side" of #2, and was even touching Leija on the nose to prevent her from going on to dogwalk and follow me in to #3, but she was very clear in her act on how she felt about that...
That's right... That is exactly what I felt Leija did when we had that run... And people could understand my frustration, atleast I think they did, because I heard alot of people laughing when it happened :) Atleast I make for good entertainment :)

Luckily I didn't get this course on film.

The second run for me was the Grade 1 debut with Niili. I had no expectations what so ever, and my entire goal for the debut was just to check how she would react in a competition setting.

However, she actually went above and beyond any expectations and won her class. Granted, she was the only dog that managed to complete the course, but that shows me that she was better than all the rest :)
Video link below:

The result of this run was the biggest point of happiness for me this weekend, as it showed me that Niili might have a great future in the agility ring :)
Jumping grade 2, the last for me and Leija this weekend, ended as the rest of the weekend. With a devastating DQ because of Tommy trying things he doesn't know.
Video link below:
But then again, how can one improve without trying new things???
So, all in all, a lot of new things that needs focus and some things that need to be practised. How do we do that? WE TRY NEW THINGS!!!
Tune in for the next post competition post, showing Tommy doing things he doesn't know!
Tommy & Leija

mandag 2. september 2013

Summer holiday 2013 ;)

So, we've had the better part of July off, both in regards to competitions and training. Leija and myself have enjoyed a few quiet weeks with just a few trainings a week, focusing on getting the more complicated handling behind us and looking just on fun-filled, speed crazy, running courses.

As part of our summer vacation, we decided to bring our family for a trip to the lovelly country of Finland to visit the breeder of both Iko, Leija and Niili. During the ten days we stayed there, we managed to squeeze in four days of agility training with the finnish national coach, Seppo Savikko, with me and Leija.
One of the things I take alot of pride in during my training, is my ability to have an open mind to all information and tips that can help me evolve in both my handling and my view on agility. After everything is said and done, I sit down and evaluate what I've learned and pick out the things I see can improve the things me and Leija are doing.

Of the sessions we had with Seppo, the most important he tried to get in to my head, was the aspect of body balance during my handling. As long as I get the correct body balance, it will become much easier to prepare myself and Leija towards the next obstacle. Unfortunately the vision of Seppo was that we become something like this:
However, after a few tries and a lot of frustration from both myself and Seppo, it turned out that my body balance in regards to running turned out to be more like this:
But luckily Seppo has good patience and knows to take it slower with the beginners, so we really started to get something going before I had to leave.

Where does that leave me, you might ask....

With a lot of the following: 
Tommy & Leija