Each month, we catch up with one of our Red2Blue Ambassadors to find out how they’re applying their Red2Blue training in their daily lives. This month we speak to rower Archie Drummond about how Red2Blue is helping him achieve his ambitions.
Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do.
My name is Archie Drummond. I’m a Division 1 Mens Rower studying and competing at the University of Washington in Seattle, and also involved in the trialling system for the U23 GB rowing team. I have set British and world age-group records on the Concept 2 rowing machine and have won a Pac-12 conference championship.
How did you get involved with Gazing?
I knew Martin personally and, upon talking about my ambitions in my sport, he introduced me to the philosophy, resources and skills that Gazing has to offer. It completely opened my eyes to a new way of thinking about and approaching challenges – in sport and in life.
What has been the toughest moment of your career to date?
During the summer of 2022, I failed to make selection for boats to race in the American collegiate system’s national championships. Soon after, I developed appendicitis, which cut short my trialling for the U23 GB rowing team. The disappointment of not realising my goals for the year combined with the difficultly of recovery from surgery provided the toughest moment in my career so far.
How did Gazing Red2Blue help you through that and other challenges?
Gazing really helped me focus on the day-to-day things I can do to get me to the next step of my recovery. Not to look ahead and be daunted by the end result, but instead to be present and clear on the steps I needed to take to make the end result a reality.
So how do you stay motivated?
Motivation is a tricky one. I feel many things make up motivation, firstly a genuine love for what you are doing is the most important and reliable source of motivation. But even doing the things we love will eventually create mental roadblocks, and this is where Gazing’s idea of ‘zooming in and zooming out’ can help. When the ‘here and now’ of your journey is becoming unappealing you must find your ‘why’ – why did you start in the first place? Why is this feeling getting in the way of the end result? etc. This usually works for me: adding perspective to the process during moments of weakness is just one of many incredible skills and techniques I’ve practised and learnt at Gazing.
What’s the best piece of advice anyone’s ever given you?
Perhaps this is a bit of a cliché, but this advice has resonated strongly with me. My father would often say to me, “Just do your best, that is all you can do”. And although this may sound far too simple, I strive to carry out the philosophy and integrity of that advice in all aspects of my life.
Without knowing it, my dad was actually using much of the philosophy utilised by Gazing. It doesn’t ask you to perform at someone else’s best but at your own. It doesn’t put focus on things you cannot control but on the things that you can. It doesn’t put attention on the end result, but on the process.
What advice would you give to someone just starting out?
My advice to someone starting out is to be a student of whatever game you are entering. Be curious, be driven, enjoy it, ask questions, and do your best.
How do you switch off?
For me, this usually happens when I am surrounded by friends and family. Going on walks or hikes in nature, or most fun activities away from rowing are usually times where I can switch off.
To hear more about Archie’s career, you can follow him on Instagram @archiedrum