By Kathryn Bertine
Think George Plimpton. other than with genuine athletic skill. And he’s a girl. And she’s taken on a problem that makes Paper Lion look like a brisk online game of cross Fish.
Meet Kathryn Bertine, elite triathlete, former expert determine skater, and ravenous artist. simply as her own goals start to fall apart in the summertime of 2006, ESPN stakes her to a dream: Take years to make the 2008 summer time Olympics in Beijing. As sturdy As Gold is the heroic, hilarious account of Bertine’s serial labor within the geographical regions of triathlon, smooth pentathlon, group handball, tune biking, street biking, rowing, open water swimming, racewalking, and—fasten your seatbelts—luge.
On her trip, the stumbling blocks diversity from jet lag to jellyfish, flat tires to floundering relationships, repeated rejection to highway rash. yet, as time is working out, Bertine doesn’t sweat the small stuff, in simple terms the large—like scouring the globe for a tiny kingdom to undertake her, and pushing her physique and brain so far as it's going to move. might be the entire solution to China.
Between harrowing, usually laugh-out-loud episodes of triumph and humiliation, Bertine takes brief “Water Breaks” to think about the ins-and-outs of fan mail, failure, rehydration, nasal reconstruction, and the way top to punish steroid users.
Kathryn Bertine swims, runs, and rides—and writes—like a champion. In As stable as Gold, Bertine proves she has whatever extra precious than an Olympic medal. She’s received Olympic mettle. by way of the human center, she takes the gold.
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Extra resources for As Good As Gold: 1 Woman, 9 Sports, 10 Countries, and a 2-Year Quest to Make the Summer Olympics
Thanks, Bob,” I say. With every bit of sportsmanship I can muster, I turn to shake Brutus’ hand. “See you at track practice,” I smile. “Uh-huh,” Lucas says with a smile, giving a quick wave as we walk out the door. DAY TWO, A LITTLE LATER IN THE AFTERNOON The Nervous Willies are back in my gut, partying like teenagers in an empty house. We’re at the Colorado College running track, just a few miles from the Olympic Training Center. By “we” I mean Janusz, Dragomir, Lucas, Sandu Rebenciuc my run pacer, and a rowdy assembly of acids whooping it up in my lower intestines.
When my kickball dreams were put on hold, I fell in love with figure skating. I fell in love with the physical effort. I fell in love with the coldness. I fell a lot, in general. At fourteen, I actually had a dream one night that I was at the Olympic Games. There were a lot of lights and screaming fans and a really nifty USA warmup suit. But I couldn’t see my feet. I didn’t know if I was wearing skates or not. The dream felt so real it woke me up. There were no screaming fans next to my bed, just the chhk chhk of the second hand on my Hello Kitty alarm clock.
I hit the wall behind the target. The pellet bounces away, bapless. Sill encourages me to try again. And again. And again. Then, bap! Upper left hand corner! Woohoo, I hit the paper. After a few minutes of successful bapping, I notice that I’m actually getting better. I’ve nailed six bull’s-eyes right in the cornea. My right arm is incredibly fatigued after two hours of holding a blade and a pistol at a ninety-degree angle, and when practice is over I feel terribly lopsided. The left side of my body hasn’t done nearly as much work today.
As Good As Gold: 1 Woman, 9 Sports, 10 Countries, and a 2-Year Quest to Make the Summer Olympics by Kathryn Bertine