Canadian Athlete Feature: Alpine Snowboarder, Megan Farrell
I’ve been asked the same question by a few people and I wanted to share my thoughts with everyone:
“How do you keep calm when going into races and how do you find motivation, not knowing if the Olympics will happen”
For me, my career has been unlike a majority of other athletes.
I was the first alpine snowboard athlete who balanced competition and university. I paved my own path. I finished school in 4 years, on the honour role, while winning the North American Overall championship.
After this, I went back to snowboard full-time. At this point, the team was in shambles. We only had one coach for support. No wax technician, no physio, no physical trainer. The only piece of equipment leftover from an Olympic Gold medal team was a drill. The team was starting from zero.
I joined the team with nothing but passion behind me. I spent hours learning the delicate complexity of tuning equipment (essential for racing!!). I hired my own personal trainer and drafted workouts designed specifically for my sport. I bought all of my equipment, tested what works, what doesn’t, and WHY. I spent endless hours with a sports psychologist trying to manage pressure and stress. I became a pro at booking flights, rental cars, and hotels.
A far cry away from focusing on sport.
So, why the heck would I do this?
Number 1, nothing good comes without a cost. My path was difficult, but it was mine. I can proudly say that I earned a 4th at World Championships because of MY skills built over 6 years of hard work and endless determination.
I believe I can be successful because I have developed the knowledge and skill set where I don’t need to rely on outside help. I am comfortable in a stressful environment because I understand all of the factors within alpine snowboarding. I sit with a skill set most other competitors do not have because they have never needed to run their own careers.
For motivation, I have the advantage. I am not competing for the money or the glory. I don’t get a salary from the sports organization to race for my country. This gives me the space to focus on my task instead of worrying about outside factors. My goal is to understand and identify any factor that makes a fast snowboarder. My motivation is purely speed, not external.
So, what is the take away?
- To do great things, don’t be afraid to be away from the norm.
- Greatness takes time, don’t be discouraged, and build skills along the way. Knowledge can never be taken from you.
- When in a high stress environment such as giving a presentation, become a master of your material. Confidence that you know your stuff goes a long way.
- When searching for motivation, go back to your WHY. Break it down until you reach the internal factors, as they are the most powerful!
I am very proud of the work I have done over the past six years and I want to thank Bothwell-Accurate for the support in getting me to this place.
Olympics are in a little over 250 days!
Let’s go Canada!