Okay, so by now you are probably wondering if there is any truth to the rumor started by Carl Lewis about the 2012 Jamaican Olympics Team. You know, the one about whether or not they have a really strict drug testing program or not. Somehow he finds it hard to believe how fast these runners (specifically Usain Bolt) really are. I just thought I’d take the time to point out a few key factors that may or may not be influencing their winnings and Bolt’s record-breaking achievements in particular.
1. Yam: Usain Bolt’s father explained back when he first set the 100m world record in Beijing, that “It is definitely the Trelawny yam” that makes Usain so fast. Trelawny is the parish in Jamaica where Usain grew up and a huge producer/exporter of yam.
2. Peace of Mind: Nothing robs the fruits of one’s labor quite like the bandits called Stress & Worry. These two usually roll together and can be found shortening the life spans of viable, talented athletes, artists, and joe-schmoes alike worldwide. To these bandits, Usain says this: “Worrying gets you nowhere. If you turn up worrying about how you’re going to perform, you’ve already lost. Train hard, turn up, run your best, and the rest will take care of itself.” http://www.runnersworld.co.za/olympics/train-like-an-olympian/
3. Maroon Lineage: Although in recent years, Jamaica has been popularized for its tourist areas, being the birhtplace of reggae music, and its abundant “herbs”, the island’s Maroon history is quite noteworthy. I was just guessing that Usain Bolt must be a descendant from those brave men and women who escaped slavery in the 1700s through rebellions, and yes, RUNNING to the hills. A quick Internet search proved that, in fact, “Trelawny was also home to the largest group of Maroons in the island.” It just gets better!
Gotta love a man who eats yam most mornings for breakfast, doesn’t worry, and is from a proud ancestry like the Maroons.
Wikipedia even goes on to state that: “A 1739 treaty between the Maroons and the English gave the Maroons freedom and land, which effectively put a stop to their raids on the plantations. However, a second Maroon uprising in 1795, led to over 600 Maroons being exiled to Nova Scotia, Canada and later to Sierra Leone in Africa in 1800.”
In my opinion, Usain and the Jamaican Olympic Track & Field Team just paid homage to their Maroon ancestors by returning to the British empire of imperialism and conquest, and running away with SO MUCH GOLD!
Perhaps the unsung heroes of the Olympics are the rest of the cast of the Caribbean diet, of which green leafy vegetables like callaloo are a staple. I would be willing to bet that Usain ate his fair share of those veggies as well, a great source of iron and calcium. Not to mention coconut milk and other fresh fruits.
Check out this quote from the London Evening Standard:
“Olympic officials believe they have thought of everything to cater for the 16,000 village residents, but additional items may be necessary when the world’s fastest man Usain Bolt and his Jamaican team mates arrive next week.
At their Birmingham base, chefs have had to seek out a goats head for the athletes,but after failing, settled for diced goat meat to prepare a curry for the Caribbean visitors.
Team member Yohan Blake, who is Bolt’s great rival for the 100m and 200, gold medals, is also known to consume a huge bunch of bananas a day.
“I eat 16 ripe bananas every day. Naturally I tend to lose potassium so I have to build it all back. For me it works and provides more energy” he said.
The team also have a taste for callaloo, a type of cabbage and an advance party is already seeking out the right ingredients to ensure the Olympic guests’ every taste is sufficiently catered for.”
And to think, Usain Bolt is a guy who actually ate chicken nuggets before both his Beijing and IAFF wins! Yikes. P.S. Callaloo is NOT a type of cabbage!
Well there you have it, when Carl Lewis wants to understand how these records are being broken (including his), he should look to the diet, mindset, and ancestry of the Jamaican team for his answers. Go Team Jamaica!