Australian swimmer , James Magnussen opened up near his pool of broken dreams in London today by describing his Olympic heartache in just two words: "It hurts."
He was out-touched in a heartbreaking climax to the 100m freestyle and had to accept silver in a race in which he felt destined for gold.
Magnussen, 21, has never been overtaken from behind in a big individual race over the past 18 months. Yet American Nathan Adrian found the desperate speed during the final 25m of the race to do just that and touch out Magnussen by the smallest margin in swimming - one-hundredth of a second.
So, how long is 1/100th of a second, or as some call it, a jiffysecond...
In 1/100th of a second, a light beam travels 3000 kilometres, a cheetah moves 20 centimetres, the Earth rotates five metres around its axis ... and Usain Bolt runs just under 10 centimetres
But, in the Olympic pool it can make the difference between where you are on the medal stand.
Michael Phelps - who won a record 19th Olympic medal on Tuesday night - barely edged out Serbia's Milorad Cavic by 0.01s in the 100m butterfly to take his seventh gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics with a time of 50.58s.
The close finish sparked protests from the Serbian camp, although Cavic later wrote on his blog that he had accepted the American's victory. Also in the pool at Beijing, Germany's Britta Steffen edged 41-year-old American Dara Torres by the same margin to take the top spot in the 50m freestyle.
Olympic athletes are known for their perseverance and determination as they prepare for their events. Often it comes down to doing your best on any given day. The competition is always filled with stories of celebration and disappointment, but what can you do with 1/100th of a second?
Is there consolation in coming that close? What has been your reaction to working as hard as you can at something and then just barely falling short of your goal? Is it the effort that counts or the outcome? Let us know.