Thursday, April 23, 2009

Saying goodbye

These next weeks I am saying good-bye to some of my closest friends. Luckily one of my friends on the Seal teams is getting married this weekend, and helping Orlanda and I deal with the losses we are soon facing, by bringing our good friends to us.

My boy JT leaves next week for Virginia, for the elite Seal team. I love him, Orlanda loves him, and we will miss him more than he knows. As much as we hope for his success, and we were happy he passed the initial screenings for the elite Seal team, we are sad he's leaving us. He's one of the best people to come into our lives, and losing him is not something which we agree to, but we love him and send him off with our blessings. We love you JT.

Jim and Orlanda

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Edge

"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over."

--Hunter S. Thompson


Monday, April 20, 2009

Underwater Swim Video Clinic this Weekend in Chicago

Just a reminder that I will be in the Chicago area this weekend for an underwater swim video analysis clinic. I'll be conducting the clinic on both Saturday and Sunday, (whichever day works for the athletes), and the clinics include a presentation which will explain the key factors and technical aspects of swimming, as well the physics of the movements, so athletes can better understand what it is they want to accomplish in the water.

I have a few spots remaining, but time is running out. You can find all the important info and register here:

Hope to see you there!

Coach Vance

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Brother and Sunset

I had dinner with my brother this week. It was the first time we've talked in over a year. He moved to San Diego, but a dispute kind of put us at odds. He "manned-up" and made the first contact to fix things, ironically just 2 days after Orlanda and I had talked and decided it was time for me to contact him.

I love him, and it was great to see him. It's funny how the stuff you hold between family seems so big in principle, but when it comes down to it, you love your family and find it amazing you let stuff come between you.

I hope to spend much more time with him in the coming months, maybe even bring him to some of the events I'll be headed to, and expose him to more of my life as a coach, (and former, perhaps one day again, athlete). I think he's got great potential to do amazing things, he just needs to see someone he respects and cares about be an example how it can be done.

Soon after finishing this post, I'll be walking down the 5 blocks to the Pacific Ocean, and watching the sunset with Orlanda. It's at 7:20 PM this evening, and I'm looking forward to enjoying it with her. I love San Diego. Each time I think I would consider living somewhere else, I'm reminded how amazing and beautiful it is here. If you're thinking of changing your life and want to move someplace amazing, I would keep this place on your list. I did, and I will never regret it.

Life continues to move in the right direction, and it's tough to worry about a bad economy, politics, etc, when you live in your own wonderful bubble. At times I think my bubble is too small, but most of the time, I like that it's small. San Diego is great, and life is great here.

I'm heading to Chicago this weekend for a big underwater swim video analysis clinic, and hope if you're in the area, you'll consider coming. I will teach you more about swimming in a few hours than you've probably learned in years!

Hope to see you around...


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

RIP Dasy

If you've followed this blog, you know I am close with Marcus Luttrell. Marcus, his twin brother Morgan, JT, Boe, Ben and a host of other Navy Seals I have been blessed to know, and be friends with. There are certain people who come into your life, and they get you to realize what loyalty, care, courage, respect and love are about. Each one of these gentlemen I've met have brought this to my life.

I have spent time in Huntsville, Texas, at the Luttrell residence, with Marcus and Mama. I've had Marcus let me shoot some of his guns, and laugh at what a terrible shot I was. He respects my toughness like I'm a Seal, but knows I wouldn't make it as a sniper for the Seals.

I've met the animals on the farm, from Mama's horses, to the dogs, including Dasy. Last week, Dasy was murdered by some local punks in the Huntsville area, who were out shooting dogs. (I can't believe I have to even write that sentence.)

Marcus called me on March 29th, to catch-up, and tell me how he was hoping to see me at an upcoming wedding here in San Diego, for a mutual friend in the Seals, Ben. He had just gotten out of the hospital after having some surgery from complications still dating back to his miraculous survival in Afghanistan. He was on the mend, and things seemed like that were going to be good. It was a privilege to hear from him.

Then the next thing I hear is this news, and I am just thankful that Marcus did not murder these men. I am amazed at the restraint he showed as trained killer. I can't imagine I would have done the same.

The fact these guys even threatened Marcus afterward, shows a lack of any conscience. Then the other scumbag turned himself in, thankfully...

As soon as I heard about this, I called Marcus, and just wanted to pay my respects, and let him know I'm here if he needs anything. I know he doesn't, but man, I had to call. Killing that dog was like trampling on the graves of the lost Seals.

I worry now. I really hope these guys don't mean what they say, because next time, Marcus will not hold back I'm sure. I don't want to see him deal with more death and trauma. But these guys don't realize they just messed with over 2,000 of the most elite-trained killers the world has ever known.

I'm thankful my parents taught me right and wrong, and I'm thankful I have Seals in my corner.


Sunday, April 12, 2009

DVR has changed my life, and saved it. Happy Easter too!

Today I was able to watch the Masters, Paris-Roubaix, and the 70.3 World Championships. It's amazing what DVR can do! In my training, especially in the fall, DVR allowed me to train and not miss my biggest and favorite TV shows, games, etc. My favorite of course, were Nebraska football games. College football is a big Saturday sport, but Saturdays were also the typical times for big rides with groups, etc. It made it much easier to get out and get my workouts in, and still be able to catch all the action, from pre-game and kick-off, until the final buzzer. It's like the world of College Football was on my time.

It's amazing how much DVR has done for me in terms of not stressing to get to the TV to catch the things which interest me, and how I can fast forward thru commercials to even maximize the little time I have to spend to watch shows or games.

Now that I'm not training, and instead working my tail off, I've been reminded how much it helps to save my marriage! Most wives don't pay attention or even care about whether they are talking to you during commercial breaks or right at the climax of a show or game, they just want to talk with you. Instead of having to decide which to pay attention to, or half pay attention to each, I'm now able to push pause, and make my wife happy, and still catch all the action! Sometimes I don't even push pause, just turn my attention straight to her, and then go back and rewind and catch back up to where I was. It's awesome!

Thank you DVR gods!

Today I was talking with Orlanda and how much I like Easter compared to Christmas. At Easter, people just care about getting together and enjoying company. There isn't the stress of gifts, travel, etc. Kids are the main focus, not adults. It's really nice.

Happy Easter!


Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Going against the favorites...

My friend sent me this, and I thought it was pretty cool. It's a lot of what I based my attitude and racing on. It's now a lot of what I try to get my athletes to see and think like...