Monday, February 1, 2016

Common Traits of World Class Athletes

by Marilyn Chychota

I've had several athletes qualify for a world championships every year for over five years now, across Ironman, 70.3 and duathlon. While some of the details of their training have been different, they all share common traits in their approach to achieving qualification.

  • They are honest about their dedication level.

  • They have the ability to plan, sacrifice and commit. They set their lives up completely towards their goals. That includes work, family, nutrition, gear, daily choices, social life and commitment level.

  • They surround themselves with environment and support that is in line with their goals.

  • They talk less and do the work.

  • They know when to focus and when to relax.

  • They are consistent.

  • They understand when to turn it on and are not constantly searching for clues and magic bullets.

  • They stick to long term goals. They trust and believe in the plan.

  • They understand it takes time and go with the ups and downs.

  • They aren't afraid of risk or failure.

  • They take ownership of their actions and make no excuses for their outcomes.

The above may seem obvious, but the fact is there is no secret "trick" that makes them great. These are some of the key factors in the athletes that time and time again have the ability to make it to the world championship level. If this is your goal, take note and put yourself in a position to reach it. There is more to being great then simply wanting it.


Marilyn Chychota has been in elite sport since the age of 9, from show jumping to cycling and triathlon. Competing on an international stage in all three sports with an Ironman title, several podiums and state championships in cycling, Marilyn works with all distance and level of triathletes and cyclists. From beginners to elites; short course, bike racing, stage racing and long course triathlon, she has guided several athletes to the podium and to Hawaii qualifications.
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