Justin Reiter is a talented snowboarder. He represented team USA in the Sochi 2014 Olympics for in the Alpine Snowboarding event. However, he understands that it takes more than a “good snowboarder” to excel in the sport. It’s a combination of hard work, experience, and the drive to succeed that separates him from the pack.
1. You sacrificed so much including living out of your car at some point in order to compete in the Sochi Olympics. What was the most difficult sacrifice you had to make?
The word Sacrifice is a loaded word. It begs the reader to look at the journey from a negative point of view. Each “sacrifice” I have made along the way was a true “opportunity” to live life by a different set of rules and gain priceless life experiences. I have always put my sport career first and let everything else take a back seat. Every decision I have made along the way has been made with the goals in sport as the determining factor. As a result certain things have been put on hold, formal education being the number one. However I look forward to earning a degree in the future. Each sacrifice is an opportunity to live life uniquely and genuinely, they require individuals to be resourceful and rely on themselves. I value the sacrifices I have made, as they have been my greatest teachers.
2. What was it like being a “stray dog” in representing the USA in the parallel slalom event?
Being a lone athlete representing Alpine Snowboarding in the 2014 Olympics was a huge honor and a great responsibility. I think I put too much pressure on myself in that I truly wanted to make a statement for the disciplines in the United States. I wanted to showcase the sport, the beauty, and the talent in our country. Unfortunately I did not perform to my ability. While I am forever grateful for the opportunity and proud of my accomplishment I am disappointed in my performance. It was a lonely experience to be at the Olympics without my teammates, friends, and community.
3. Do you feel like you were at a disadvantage by not having a full team supporting you in the Sochi 2014 Olympics? Or did it increase your level of concentration in preparation for the event.
I was at a major disadvantage going into the Olympics as an independent rider. To qualify alone was a huge accomplishment. The journey taught me to stand on my own two feet. Once at the Olympics Team USA did a phenomenal job of organizing a support team. However it was very different than my normal routine and altered my approach.
4. What is next for Justin Reiter?
I will continue to compete. I am looking forward to this years World Championships and vying for a top 3 spot in the overall FIS World Cup Points List.
Getting to know Justin Reiter a little bit better
5. What is your biggest fear?
Not living up to my potential
6. What is you favorite prerace meal?
Parmesan, Arugula, Speck Pizza
7. If a tree falls in the middle of the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Why or why not
It doesn’t make a sound, it makes a noise.
8. Fill in the blanks: Snowboarding is _______ percent mental and ________ talent.
9. Did you cry while watching The Notebook?
A couple tears
10. You’re the newest addition to the crayon box, what color would you be and why?
Stormy Gray: It works well to blend all colors enriching the overall vibrancy.
11. Would you rather live one 1,000-year life or ten 100-year lives?
One 1,000-year life. Experience is invaluable.
Rugged sportsman on the outside, yet required a lone tissue for The Notebook. My favorite answer by far was his response to question one. A man with the will to do whatever he has to in order to remain competitive in his sport. Justin, if you ever stop snowboarding you should dive into a career as a writer, I didn’t have to edit a single sentence. Thank you for answering my questions and I will be rooting for you in your future events!
Photo by NBC Universal Media