Barnes Twins 3-Gunning it up!

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This past weekend concluded our three gun competitions for the summer with 4 weeks of competitions in a row. We have learned a lot about the sport of 3 gun in the past month (mostly through trial & error during matches) that will help us to improve in the future. We started out at the JP Rocky Mountain 3 gun in New Mexico (4th & 5th Tactical Lady, 43rd & 52nd Overal Tactical), then traveled to Bend, Oregon for the Crimson Trace Midnight 3 gun, then it was on to the Brownells Rockcastle 3 gun ProAm in Kentucky (6th & 8th Lady, 126 & 131 Overal) and finally the Noveske Area 2 Championships in Byers, CO (4th & 5th Tac Lady, 32nd & 39th Tactical Overal). These were our 2nd, 3rd, 4th, & 5th major 3 gun matches and we saw huge gains with each match. At each match we improved our best stages ranking higher and higher towards the top of the pack and had more consistent stages as well as having fewer bad stages. We now have a week to train for the Trijocon World Shooting Championships that will be held in West Virginia. This fall we’ll head to the 3 Gun Nation Southwest Regional Championships in Texas in October followed by the Lady 3 gun match in Georgia at the end of October. We are confident that with some more training this fall we can continue to make huge gains in 3 gun.

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We also have a packed schedule of courses for the T.O.P Shooting Institute this fall and into the winter. We just finished 2 classes for competitive shooters in Colorado & Kentucky that were a huge success. This fall we have a slew of competitive shooting courses around Colorado, Utah, & New Mexico. We’ll also be starting to work with a bunch of military units out of Fort Carson, CO as well as FBI from California and special forces units from Georgia who will be coming to work with us in Durango.

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Words to Live By from Lanny Barnes

By Lanny Barnes, Prois Pro-Staffers and Twin Biathletes www.twinbiathletes.com

The path to becoming an Olympian has no map, or trail marker, or mile marker, or Olympian for dummies book. This path however sits at the corner of life, heartache, and dreams. Every step is carved out by a million missteps, stumbles, falls and leaps. When we set out, we discover how many of those around us are willing to lend us a hand to help us find the right path. Those are the people beside us and behind us lifting us up and helping us find the right road, the right path, and giving us the wings to soar. Every setback isn’t a step back, it’s a comeback and a chance to soar again. These are a few things I’ve learned along the road to becoming an Olympian and while the 2014 Olympic Winter Games have ended,  it is only the beginning of a new dream and new path. I didn’t bring home a medal in Sochi, but I brought home so much more in experiences, perspective and my gratitude towards those who have helped both of us in this incredible journey.

The life lessons and challenges we’ve faced in biathlon over the past 15 years have not only helped us to become a better competitor, but it’s allowed us to find out exactly who we are. Thanks to all of you we know now that we won’t give up no mater what life throws at us and that we are also willing to make sacrifices for the ones we love. The last race of my career and my last Olympic race I decided that I was either going out there to win it or die trying. The sacrifice all of you have made for me deserved nothing less than my full effort. I unfortunately didn’t win, but I did die trying and had nothing left at the finish. I have always set very high goals for myself but nothing that I didn’t think wasn’t possible. All of you have pushed and encourage me to try and follow my dreams no matter how hard and challenging they might be. One of my big goals besides bringing home a medal was to try and inspire those around me in some way. I hope that both Tracy and I have as all of you have inspired us to keep pushing no matter how hard things got. I know that when I die and it comes time for God to judge me, he will not ask “how many gold medals have you won?” rather he will ask “how many people did you inspire and how much love did you put into what you did and those around you.” This is not only what I hope to have achieved, but it is something you have achieved as well. Thank you for your inspiration and for allowing us become Olympians and represent not only our country, but you. Tracy and I will dedicate our lives to giving back to all of you who have selflessly given to us and our dreams. Thank you!
-Tracy & Lanny

Tracy Barnes Receives the U.N. International Fair Play Award

By Twin Biathletes and Prois Pro=Staffers

Tracy and Lanny Barnes

 

Today Tracy was awarded the United Nations UNESCO Fair Play Award. Since its foundation by UNESCO and a number of international sports governing bodies in Paris in 1963, the goal of the International Committee for Fair Play is the worldwide defense and promotion of fair play. In order to honor and directly recognize the acts of fair play performed either within or outside the sports world, the International Committee for Fair Play annually awards Fair Play Prizes to personalities who have proved to be excellent ambassadors of fair play. Tracy was given the Pierre de Coubertin World Trophy – for an athlete or team for an act of fair play. Pierre de Coubertin was the founder of International Olympic Committee and is consider the father of the modern Olympic Games. This award has been instrumental in promoting sportsmanship both on and off the field. It is a huge honor in sports to receive this award. Very few are given out annually. Here is what Tracy had to say in accepting this award-

 

“I think sportsmanship, which this award embraces, is a way for people to go beyond the playing field, or the ski course and recognize that there is more to sport than just a win. Sportsmanship is about creating champions, both on and off the field. And while I am not a champion in my sport, I do strive to be a good person and do the right thing. In sport there is winning and there is losing and sometimes in order to win you must lose or at least sacrifice the win. I didn’t go to the Olympics to compete, but I feel I have won. I had the most incredible experience of cheering my twin sister and best friend in the greatest sporting event in the world. And I couldn’t be more proud of her effort. In biathlon Lanny was not only my best friend, but my greatest competitor. And I’ve come to realize over the years that without your competition there is no sport. You have to show the same kind of respect to your competitors that you do to your teammates. That’s what makes you a good competitor both in life and in sport. I hope that my story will help to inspire people to do something good for the people they care about. Their friends, their family, their teammates, their competitors and their neighbors.

I for one have been surrounded by incredibly inspiring people my entire life and I have to say that their selflessness has rubbed off on me. Both my grandparents were in the army and air force and served their country. Our men and women in uniform are the ones who make the ultimate sacrifice, sometimes with their life so that we can enjoy our freedoms. Both my parents were school teachers and their selfless dedication to their students and that of all teachers continues to inspire me. And my older sister is a doctor and surgeon. Her dedication to helping others is a model I will continue to strive for in my life. So, if I may, I’d like to dedicate this to my family who have supported me and given me a purpose to live by and also to our men & women in uniform, our teachers, and our doctors who work to selflessly help others on a daily basis. May we all strive to dedicate ourselves to others so that we may enrich each others lives in sport and otherwise.

 

Thanks for seeing something in me that I may never have had the opportunity to see myself. Thanks to the International Fair Play Committee for this incredible honor and thank you to the US Olympic Committee for being such wonderful hosts.”

Barnes Twins Olympic Update

 

By Lanny Barnes
Tracy is up for an award for the most inspirational person that helped an Olympian with O.C. Tanner the company that makes the rings and medals for the Olympics. When you have a free moment, please visit this page and vote for Tracy- http://www.octanner.com/olympics/2014/lanny-barnes/. You can vote up to 5 times a day until March 16th. Thanks. I attended the opening ceremonies last night which kicked off the  Sochi 2014 Olympics. It was, and always will be one of the greatest experiences and honors to be able to walk in behind our countries flag. There was so much excitement and inspiration in that stadium. We unfortunately weren’t allowed to stay for the entire event as we had to take an early bus back to our village up in the mountains to get some sleep and prepare for our training the next day. My first race will most likely be the individual next friday the 14th so tune in for that. It starts at 7pm here in Sochi (9hrs ahead of EST and 11 ahead of MST). I will keep you posted if the schedule changes. Have a great weekend!!
-Lanny

Lanny Barnes Olypmics Update!

By Lanny Barnes

The Olympics officially start just 4 days from now and I am on the ground in Sochi training at the Laura Biathlon venue that we will compete on in the Olympics. This venue is the largest biathlon venue in the world and is supposed to hold over 80,000 people in the stadium and on course. We had our first training on the venue and our race course yesterday and I have to honestly say I love it!!

 

We concluded our final training camp in Antholz, Italy and headed to Munich, Germany which would be the staging point for our team processing and our charter flight to Sochi. Our team processing consisted of checking in with the US Olympic Committee, getting our visa’s, our phones for Russia, all our team clothing such as opening and closing ceremonies and medals ceremonies clothing, doing interviews, and taking team and individual photos. A lot of Olympian describe the team processing as shopping without a credit card. You usually leave with more bags and gear than you can cary.

 

The next morning early, we boarded our charter flight to Sochi. Our flight consisted of the entire Biathlon team, as well as some members of the Luge, cross country, figure skating and Freeskiing teams. It was a fun flight that made it into Sochi only 3 hours after we took off. As soon as we landed we grabbed our mountain of gear (minus our rifles that went straight to the venue) and headed through several security and accreditation checks before taking the 1 hr bus ride to the base of the mountains. There was a definite security presence everywhere that made us all feel really safe. Sochi is a tropical city, so there was no snow and plenty of palm trees. Once we hit the base of the mountains, we took a gondola up the mountain and hoped on another bus that brought us to our athletes village. After running around organizing gear and checking into our cabins and few meetings later we hit the sack after a really long day of travel.

The next day we woke up to the most beautiful 360 degree view of the Caucasus mountains. It definitely one of the coolest athletes villages and venues I’ve ever been too. All of our races are in the evening, so most of our main trainings are in the afternoon or evening. So we took the morning to check in our rifles which were locked in a secure facility at the venue and will  remain that way until we leave, we will have access to them for training, cleaning, and dryfiring. This is normal for all Olympic games.

 

Our training on the venue couldn’t have been any better. We trained mid after noon and had blue bird skies and rock hard ski tracks. The course was a lot of fun too with some slalom type downhills and steep uphills on the 3km loop. The shooting range sits in front of a gigantic stadium that is boasted to hold over 80,000 spectators both in the stands and out on course. With the stands sitting less than 100 meters behind the range, there will definitely be some intense cheering during the shooting.

The Olympics officially kick off on Friday and the women’s first race is Sunday. We won’t find out what races we do until later in the week, so once I hear, I will send you the schedule of events I’m in. Please check out our facebook page Twin Biathletes as well as our website for updates and pictures. Thanks for all your support and help in making this dream possible. Can’t wait for the races to start!! Have a great week.

-Lanny

Twin Biathletes Racing for Olympic Gold!!

Prois Pro-Staffers and Twin Biathletes Tracy and Lanny Barnes


The Olympic racing season has started! Yep, I know, it seems a bit early seeing as though the Olympics aren’t until February. But the qualifications started last week in Jericho, Vermont. Close to 150 athletes from the U.S., Canada, Sweden, and Lithuania showed up for the event. The weekend consisted of 2 races. A short 7.5 kilometer sprint race with two shooting stages and a 10 kilometer pursuit race with 4 shooting stages. The first race for Tracy and Lanny was anything but good. Poor shooting and timid skiing put the twins in the middle of the pack. The next day, with a bit of fire lit behind their back sides, and a hunger for blood, Lanny and Tracy came out guns a-blazin’ and had the fastest times for the Americans, putting them in a good
spot for the qualifiers. The twins made a huge jump from the day before, shooting great and skiing fast too. The best news that came out of the weekend of racing was that the twin’s legs were feeling better than they have in years. They experienced no symptoms like they did in years past. This put a huge smile on the twins face and made them even more motivated going into the fall training season and leading up to the Olympics this winter. The fall months are going to be packed for Tracy and Lanny as they prepare for the winter and the
next set of qualifying races in Utah in October. The twins will be home only for a week this fall and once October hits, they’ll probably only make it home a couple of days before the end of March. The qualifying races for making the Olympic team started in August and will go through the beginning of January, at which point the Olympic team will be named. And the twins have their shoe laces tied and are ready for the big push. The twins want to send out a big THANK YOU to everyone who is supporting them. You are their motivation. Have a great fall
and let’s go for gold!

Prois Pro-Staffers, Lanny & Tracy Barnes Take on Alaska! And a Moose. And a Flight Attendant.


In Alaska Moose have the right of way….
By:  Lanny Barnes

Tracy & I boarded our second flight in Denver, Colorado that would take us to Anchorage, Alaska and yet another adventure in the world of the Twin Biathletes. After our first flight and a flight attendant that threatened every passenger that stepped foot on the plane to be thrown out face first onto the tarmac if they didn’t follow her instructions, we were hoping the next 5 hour flight & flight attendants would be a little less hostile. The male flight attendant on our second flight who resembled John Travolta with a perfectly shaped and colored black & grey goatee that complemented his jet black on bottom, grey on top “not a single hair out of place” dew, was a breath of fresh air for the stale (5 hours worth of recycled air) cabin. He was one of those people whose big goofy grin immediately made you smile or laugh. As soon as we boarded that plane and for the next 5 hours we were presented with jokes, laughs, illegal gambling, and tough history questions. Don’t worry, the illegal gambling was nothing more than collecting a dollar from willing passengers who wrote their seat number a dollar bill and threw it into a pot to be drawn by the flight attendant who insisted he won before drawing another bill and announcing a winner who ended up being a very happy 14 year old who walked away from the flight with $65 extra dollars in vacation spending money. After what seemed like the quickest 5 hour flight we’ve ever taken, the flight attendant left us with a little song… “I love you, you love me…. If you marry one of us you’ll get to fly Alaska for free”….

 

After settling into our home for the next two weeks which happened to be a short 15 minute bike to the biathlon venue located in Kincade park, we hit the sack. We had 3 simple goals for Alaska- bring our fitness to a new level, help grow biathlon & shooting sports in Alaska, and not get trampled or eaten by a moose or bear. Not quite as simple as it sounds, but ultimately we had to prepare ourselves for two weeks of extreme mind and body bruising intensity training as well as shooting clinics for ages 10-60 & two weeks of alert senses that would hopefully keep us from getting chased or worse by the many moose and bear that roam Alaska’s wild frontier.

 

The next morning we were up bright and early because Alaska summer are definitely bright and early with only 2-3 hours of dusk per night and daylight for the other 21-22 hours a day. We hit the biathlon roller ski trails and completed our first hard intensity session with our bodies feeling great with the extra O2 present at low altitude. Every morning and afternoon we would be pushing and testing ourselves to get in top physical shape to try and become the best biathlete in the world. Every evening we would put on a clinic for biathletes age 10-60 and all different levels of shooting from having never touched a rifle to having competed in World Jrs. to having extensive military shooting experience. Then every night around 9:30-10:00pm we would hop on our bikes and run the “moose & bear gauntlet”, as the locals called it, back to where we were staying.  So far we are just under a week into our journey here in Alaska and have pushed ourselves physically & mentally to a new level, have worked with a bunch a great Alaskans on improving their shooting and physical shape, and we haven’t seen any bears, but are definitely letting the moose have the right of way on the trails…..

We have another week and a half of training with two biathlon races squeezed in with the highlight coming at the end… A Babes with Bullets Shooting Camp. We’ll update you again on our next weeks worth of adventures in a week… Have a great summer!!!!

Hunting with Olympians!

By Katherine Grand

I didn’t get my rocky mountain Tom this weekend but I had awesome time with Prois Pro Staffers and twin biathletes Tracy and Lanny Barnes (www.twinbiathles.com).  We got really close to some gobbling Toms with jealous hens, saw tons of blue grouse, elk, deer, and even a horny toad (AKA horned lizard).  We saw a Jake up close and a Tom flying out of shotgun range.  I learn so much every time I go out with Tracy and Lanny and I can definitely say that hunting turkey in public lands at high elevation in the same terrain we elk hunt elk is really challenging and really fun. Especially on the 3rd weekend of the season after the birds have seen some pressure.  Next year I am definitely going out with them opening weekend when the birds are less call shy.  However the more I hunt the less focused I have become on hunting success and the more I enjoy the experience.

Tracy and Lanny grew up hunting and are the two of the most independent,  physically fit, and knowledgeable hunters I ever had the pleasure of hunting with, either female or male.    They are also incredibly humble and down to earth considering their many noteworthy accomplishments including competing in two Winter Olympics and training for their third.     Hunting with Olympic athletes in the high country gave me a great workout and we covered a lot of ground in gorgeous country.  I am so glad to have such badass  sportswomen for friends.  I can’t wait to try again!  Prois was there!

Twin Biathletes Update!

By Prois Pro Staffers Tracy and Lanny Barnes

Happy Spring!!
Winter is finally over (in some places :)) and Tracy and I have just started our training for the 2013/2014 Season which includes the 2014 Olympics next February. Tracy and I have completely recovered from the surgery and so far it has been deemed a success! We are back into training full time and are excited to get back into action with our new and improved legs. As you may know we had to end our season early due to compartment syndrome, but the surgery will allow us to maximize our potential and ski faster. It’s been 8 weeks since the surgery and we are happy to announce that we are 100% and back into training full time. We also launched our new and improved website so we can give you better updates, pictures, and even video blogs for this year as we prepare for the Olympics. Check out our website at www.twinbiathletes.com. We are also doing a fundraiser for our training on the website by selling a Twin Biathletes Cookbook that gives you our favorite healthy and tasty recipes and a lot of fun and cool facts about us and biathlon. Lanny is also selling her “wildlife series” artwork too. This unique series was done with white charcoal on black paper to bring life to all kinds of critters. All proceeds go directly towards our training and racing as we prepare for the 2014 Olympics. We are really excited about the possibility of bringing home the United States first ever medal in the Olympics for Biathlon. So please check out our website and let us know what you think and also check back regularly for updates, pictures, and videos. Have a great spring and thanks for your support!

Recovery News from the Twin Biathletes

By Lanny Barnes

“Wow, that was fast,” I thought as my eyes shot open and the recovery room nurse stood over me and told me I was done and everything had gone well. “Amazing, that was the best nap I’ve had in a long time; is surgery supposed to be that easy?”, I thought.

The legs before surgery . . .

 

The last thing I remember was the nurse wheeling my bed into the OR and them asking me to scooch onto the operating table while trying not to moon the nurse behind me through my fashionable yellow hospital gown. After they strapped me to the table and I cracked a joke about making sure they had the right twin and making sure they were going to cut my legs and not my arms, the anesthesiologist came in and started putting something into my IV. He told me it was just a relaxant as I mumbled something about how fast that stuff worked as and the next thing I knew I was in the recovery room.

 

I’m not going to try and pretend there wasn’t any pain or nausea or anxiety. There was plenty of that, but it seemed to go pretty well. I have only gotten one other surgery and that was my tonsils. Compared to that, this seemed like a breeze. The hardest part was the wait and build up to the surgery.

 

Our mom drove us up to the Olympic Training center on Wednesday where we’d be staying for recovery post op. We had our pre-surgery appointment with the surgeon on Thursday and our surgery was scheduled for Friday. As we drove up to Colorado Springs, we had to decide who was the “lucky” one to go first with the surgery. Tracy announced that she wanted to go second so the surgeon was well practiced by then so I countered and said, no problem, I’ll go first while he is alert and still awake. I really wasn’t excited about going first, but I knew Tracy didn’t want to and as the older twin, I had to step up

We met with surgeon and he went though the surgery and told us what to expect and also what we would be allowed to do after the surgery. His instructions were very plain and simple, “just don’t mess it up”. What he meant by that is, stay off your feet and don’t let your athlete instincts take over and try to hit the ground running with 6 three inch long  incisions in your legs.

Tracy and I thought we’d be up to the task and were actually looking forward to what was probably the first time in our lives being couch potatoes. But as active people it proved to be much harder than we thought.

Tracy in the Recovery Room

The day of the surgery I was scheduled to report to the hospital at 10:30am for a 12:00pm surgery. I wondered if I should bring the doc some snacks as I didn’t want him getting low on blood sugar while I was on the operating table during his lunch hour. Speaking of food. Tracy and I weren’t allowed to eat anything after midnight the night before and could only drink water after that. For athletes that hardly ever go four hours without eating, we knew it might be a challenge. So Tracy and I set our clocks for 11:00pm and had a “last meal” party in our rooms. We both woke up hungry despite the party the night before. I felt bad for Tracy having to wait until her surgery at 2:00pm, but then again, she did volunteer to go second ;)!

We got to the hospital and there seemed to be a buzz amongst the nurses and staff. It wasn’t often they saw twins and operated on them for the same thing in the same day. I guess the had to have a special meeting the night before to work out the logistics to make sure they didn’t mix us up the day of the surgery. I guess we could have made it easier on them and wrote our names in big bold letters across our foreheads, but as a twin, it’s always more fun to see if people can figure it out.

After the surgery they got us as stable as a person could get with anesthesia and major pain meds pumping through our veins and sent us home. I was lucky enough to have a longer time in recovery than Tracy which meant more jello. Tracy and I were both starving when we got out of surgery and ate enough to feed a small army before crashing into another deep sleep.

Recovering after our nerf gun wheel chair race....

 

We spent the next few days at the Olympic training center confined to wheel chairs, which only managed to confine us to the large two block size compound. We wheeled ourselves to and from meals and our physical therapy and spent the rest of the time lying in bed with our feet up on a tall stack of pillows. After a few days they took the drains and bandages off and gave us the green light to go home. Once at home we graduated to crutches and have been given the green light to walk normally on Friday. A week after surgery, but warned not to walk for exercise or run. We can start easy spinning on a bike this weekend, and will be able to resume full training at 6 weeks.

 

Legs five days after the surgery...

The surgery was successful and we are confident that if we don’t “mess it up” ;) we will be back stronger than we were before and ready for the Olympics next year. Thanks for all your support and prayers. Besides sore butts from to much sitting Tracy and I are doing really well. We’ll keep you posted on how the recovery goes.