Everyone has a dream, goal or achievement to work toward. Most people don't decide to launch themselves down an icy tube on a small piece of metal - headfirst, nonetheless.
But, that is what John Daly, a graduate from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh, chose to do, and it was this choice that led him to the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics.
"The whole experience was amazing," Daly said. "I wouldn't change anything."
Daly, who placed 17th in the skeleton finals, said his team, family and friends were all crucial to his success, and the spirit of the Olympic games was truly something to behold.
"It's tough," he said. "It's the best competition in the world."
The U.S. skeleton team had three athletes place in the final round, with Zach Lund placing the highest, in 5th place. Canada took home gold in the event.
Daly was happy to be able to compete in the games, and plans to train for the 2014 Winter Olympics, in Sochi, Russia.
"My goal is to make all the skeleton world cups for the next four years," he said.
The team U.S. skeleton team trials are in October, at which point they will be training for the trials in London.
Daly said he was amazed at how far he has come since he first tried flinging himself down an icy tunnel.
It was his grade school gym teacher who, after a physical fitness test, had Daly go to Lake Placid to try luging. That is where Daly switched over to the sport.
"I like the sprinting in the beginning," he said. "I started almost 10 years ago. I was 15, so I didn't care."
He said although he loves his sport, he looks back on a few incidents and thinks, "Man, maybe I shouldn't have done that."
Though proud of his achievements, Daly said his plans for the future are just beginning to unfold.
Michael O'Keefe is an intern with the State University of New York at Plattsburgh.