“... on the Saturday night, I was in the last heat (of 2007), standing in a row with all the big names — Rich Froning, Jason Khalipa, Josh Bridges, Scott Panchik, Marcus Hendren. That was my biggest highlight.”
This year in Carson, Calif., Albert-Dominic Larouche finished 12th, besting his two previous performances (25th in 2012 and 33rd in 2011).
“Every year since my first Games I have improved and have felt more prepared,” he says, adding that the crowd of more than 20,000 this year made a particular impression on him. “Each year it’s always crazy, but this year was completely surreal.”
He admits he was stressed before each event, even though he’s an experience competitor.
“But once my name was called, I kind of got into the zone and focused on what I had to do.”
The full-time cop’s top event finishes were two 7th places in the 2k row and Cinco 2. He also finished in the top 10 in five of the 12 scored events.
“The longest distance I had done before the half marathon was a 5k row. Because we had the 2k as an event, I decided to go all-out on it,” he says. “I think I PR’d by 10 seconds. After that, I hit the wall and I stopped rowing for like 30 seconds, and then did a kilometer at around 2:40/500 meters … that’s very bad for a guy at the Games.”
After slowing down, he regrouped and told himself he still had a long row ahead with time to gain some ground. Focusing only on 2,000-meter increments, he managed to pull out a 19th-place finish on the Row 2.
With his thoughts centered around maintaining his ranking and executing each of the movements to the best of his ability, the CrossFit Chambly athlete only realized what his favorite moment of the Games was in retrospect.
“When I came back to Montreal, I was thinking about it, and on the Saturday night, I was in the last heat (of 2007), standing in a row with all the big names — Rich Froning, Jason Khalipa, Josh Bridges, Scott Panchik, Marcus Hendren. That was my biggest highlight.”
Despite injuring a bicep while doing pull-ups in that event, Larouche continued on to the final day of competition, determined to reach his goal of finishing in the top 10. His consistency over the previous workouts had put him in a solid 9th place heading into the last three events, placing his objective within reach. Earning 21st in the Sprint Chipper, 17th in the Cinco 1, and tying for seventh in the Cinco 2, Larouche ended up just three spots shy.
“When I finished the Games, truthfully, I was a little disappointed,” he says. “But I realized, last year I finished 25th and it felt unreal, so this year, I’m super happy. I want it to motivate me for the next year.”
After flying home, working seven night shifts in a row, and celebrating with the biggest poutine he’s had in his life, Larouche says he will focus on getting stronger and preparing for next year.
“It’s a long journey, so I will be thinking about the Open first,” he says. “But of course, the main goal is to get back to the Games and improve my ranking and do better than I did this year.”