Hello! I am Dominik, an athlete with over 25 years into several sports disciplines (predominantly endurance running, tennis, triathlon) who has suffered a horrifying accident. That’s how my story would begin if we went out for a run and if I could share my humble thoughts on enthralling performances, breathtaking willpower and a radiant sports carreer. Different thoughts, not the usual ones.
Awe-inspiring ones, captivating ones, that would stimulate you, I believe. Those in the mind of a truly heartfelt PhD aspirant, a psycho- and sociolinguist, simultaneous interpreter and translator fluent in and teacher of seven languages, down-to-earth but with no time for unintelligent conversations.
The crash at 85,7km/h (53mph) on a downhill cycling section of an Ironman-Triathlon (3.86km (2.4mi) swimming, 180.2km (112mi) cycling and 42.195 (26.2mi) running) and the behavior afterwards required decency, propriety, passion, determination, motivation, effort, willpower, never-say-die attitude, discipline and integrity.
That’s why I helped another athlete involved in the accident who was under shock right after. Unable to accept my offer to take my broken bike to continue in the race, I decided to hug him before continuing myself in the race. With still many cycling and running kilometers/miles ahead, with three broken vertebrae as well as deep flesh wounds on my arms and legs which -believe it or not- went totally unnoticed- as the adrenaline running through my veins carried me through, and unable to feel pain initially, it was soon after finishing the race that I begun to see the stars. One of my good friends brought me to hospital and took care of me with his family. Everyday. For almost two months. The deep and bloody flesh wounds were cured. The contusions and fractures were cured. My back was cured. And I can only insist and underline that the human body is unimaginably smart and strong.
I am grateful and honoured that people found my story inspiring and considered my humble minority for such unique recognition awards, being fortunate to be a nominee and recipient of Fair-Play recognition awards from the International Olympic Committee, Pierre de Coubertin International Fair-Play Representation and other international authorities. Given this (hi)story, and having also competed in the Triple-Ultra-Ironman World Championships (11.4kms swimming, 540km cycling, 126.6km running, consecutively, non-stop) but being forced to stop early into the race due to bioanatomical issues with my vertebrae and technical issues with the bike, I decided to share my insights being an avid listener, a nature lover, a passionate vegan (almost 100%) but also a travel enthusiast; too a transparent and easygoing person as many would say.
Not considering myself to have been part of the elite of the sports I practiced so ambitiously and enthusiastically for so many years, I am friends with top athletes and World-Champions in several sports disciplines who always are happy to give me a few moments to have a nice laugh with them and fill me with inspiration. I continue to practice my sports with an undisputed professional approach, although my back still tends to hurt in certain positions (especially in the aero-position on the bike, while swimming and sleeping) and my weight is still crazy high for an ultra-endurance athlete (80kgs) especially after the long hospital stays with no movement at all being imprissioned (no drama) in a tight full body corset.
Tragic it may sound, let me tell you as an encouraging side-note once again that the human body is unimaginably intelligent and smart, so please try to take advantage of the many opportunities you have to spend at least a couple of hours out there doing sport(s) you like or love on a daily basis - just ask yourself if health is one of your priorities and, especially, what is one hour out of twenty-four? Anyone can do that. Right?
Please, feel free to message or follow me over here, on Facebook or Instagram anytime you wish. I take my readers’ thoughts seriously and am always happy to help, if I can and time allows it. Of course, it would be much better if this could happen whilst we share a long run, a squash match or a surfing day somewhere together.