Penny Coomes and Nick Buckland know first hand that Olympic motto about triumph and struggle.
But as they completed their third Olympic figure skating appearance with a finish just outside the top ten in 11th, they were finally able to reflect on their improbable journey.
Since making their debuts in Vancouver, Buckland has had heart surgery and Coomes has recovered from a horrific knee injury that doctors thought would end her career.
The former European bronze medallists scored 101.96 on their reworked free skate to drop one place from their position yesterday.
And both admitted frustration their time away from competition had impacted on scores.
“I think we felt we performed really well, even if the scores were a little bit disappointing,” said Buckland.
“The way we finished, we should be really pleased with it but sometimes scores can change your feelings about your performance.
“It's about your skating, it's your music choice, your costumes and the whole package. That's why we made that change to that program, because we feel that was going to help.”
Coomes added: “This is the thing that I struggle with, I do feel a little bit because we sat out a year we've been put back where we were before. I do feel that coming into these Games that we were competitive and we could have been fighting for a bronze medal.”
However, if there was a twinge of regret about their scores, there was no doubt about their feelings as Canada’s Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir won gold, their fifth Olympic medal in a career that started with them skating together as seven-year olds.
“They've been an inspiration and they've moved the sport on,” said Buckland, who confirmed the British pair would travel to next month’s World Championships, where they will seek to improve their best finish of seventh from two years ago.
"Torvill and Dean were absolute icons but Tessa and Scott are icons in their own way too, I’m not going to choose a favourite.
“We all feel like we are trying to move the sport forward but they are something else."