This man is more successful than you


Capt. James Bales is an orthopedic surgeon and is training for the 2012 Olympics. (Air Force photo.)

Capt. James Bales is an Air Force officer, an orthopedic surgeon, a star triathlete and is training to compete in the 2012 Olympics.

Makes you feel like a doughy dullard, doesn’t it?

But wait, there’s more: The Air Force brass named Bales of Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., as the service’s top male athlete of 2010.

And while the rest of us were dealing with frigid temperatures, the doc was in San Diego last month to accept the award at the annual Air Force Sports Directors Conference.

Now Bales, on staff at the Air Force Academy, is training for the 2012 Summer Games in London as part of the World Class Athlete Program.

The program, which is admittedly a pretty sweet deal for anyone involved, should provide Bales with some much needed shut-eye.

“It gives me dedicated time to recover from tough workout sessions,” he said in a release. “This includes getting eight hours of sleep a night. This is in stark contrast to my time as an orthopedic resident when I was averaging only a few hours of sleep a night and on-call for the hospital an average of every fourth night.

Bales swam at the Air Force Academy, from which he graduated in 2001. And when he attended medical school, he jogged or cycled the 10-mile commute to save money. He has competed in Ironman triathlons since 2002.

“It all started as a means to avoid the parking fees at school,” he said.

He won the 2010 Armed Forces Triathlon Naval Base at Ventura County, Calif., in June with a time of 1 hour, 46 minutes, 32 seconds. He had finished second the previous six races.

He’ll stay busy over the next two years. Bales must travel the globe to compete and collect enough points to qualify for the Olympics Trials.

But he has another trial looming: taking the orthopedic board exams this July.


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