Christian Malcolm has been used to the bright lights of major athletics finals for most of his career.
But losing in the Olympic Games semi-finals, with his mum and family watching from the stands, has given the Newport 200m ace a big headache - does he quit or carry on to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014.
Malcolm vied with Marlon Devonish as the best half-lap sprinter in the UK for years and this was his fourth selection for the Olympics, having made the final in Sydney 2000 and Beijing 2008 while he was ill in 2004.
Time is not on his side and the sprinting world has moved on in giant leaps in recent years. Indeed, Malcolm has never bettered his personal best of 20.08secs for 200m since setting it way back in 2001 in the semi-finals of the World Championships in Edmonton.
He ran 20.51secs in finishing third behind Holland's Churandy Martina and Jamica's Warren Weir, both of whom qualified for Thursday's final in the Olympic Stadium alongside the big guns like Usain Bolt, Yohan Blake and Wallace Spearman.
All of those ran below 20.20, which Malcolm, now 33, has not been close to since, ironically, reaching the Olympic final four years ago in Beijing with a time of 20.25secs.
The Welshman accepts that his time to part company with the sport he has dedicated his life to, winning the World Junior Championships in 1998 and numerous UK/AAA Championships, is close.
However, his long-term mentor and former coach Jock Anderson tried to pursuade the Welshman to give it two more years and make the Glasgow Commonwealth Games his swansong.
But not even the voice of his 'father-figure' may convince Malcolm to carry on.
Dejected after reaching only 11th place out of the three semi-finals in London, he would not confirm he was quitting but said he would be seriously thinking about it.
Malcolm said: "I didn't run a particularly great race and I'm not going to make any excuses. I have had a pre-training plan and I expected a lot more from myself today.
"So I'm asking myself is this it. You have to know when to stop and I've been to the Olympics four times.
"I'm struggling with it at the moment. I don't see myself as a semi-finalist, I see myself as being in the final, especially as the sport has moved on.
"If you had asked me six or seven years ago, I would have seen myself as a final challenger and in amongst the medals. But, even though the sport has moved on, I see myself as good enough to be in the finals.
"If I don't get to the finals and latter stages now, then it is disheartening.
"Jock did suggest (that I go to the Commonwealths). The Commonwealths being in Glasgow in 2014, I know the Welsh team want me to stay on and compete in that. I would love to do it.
"But, as it is in two years and next year, going to the World Championships and being disappointed again would be hard.
"At Commonwealth level, I would expect to do a lot better but going to the major world championships or anything like that, I don't know.
"At a European level, I can still be up there and winning medals but, by my standards, it's not good enough. I'll sit down towards with my folks towards the end of the season."
Malcolm has still got the 4x100 metres relay at the Olympics to think about and has been called on numerous times to run the first leg around the opening bend, which is a speciality.
But he added: "I'm not sure whether I'm in the four yet."
Nevertheless, he admits the London Games has been a humbling expeirence. He said: "To witness a nation come together like this over the last two weeks is overwhelming and to be out there and to see my mum and my sister on the 200m start. To me it is a dream come true.
"When I was a kid, I never dreamt of this. It is fantastic."