It’s been such a great week training! Canada is physically so HUGE that they had to divide the country into the East and the West for the National Training. Two weeks ago there was a training in Regina and this week was the training for Eastern Canada in Gatineau. Some of the competitors came from out west for a second training just for more practice. They are staying with my coach for a couple of weeks and I get to train with them all the time too which is awesome. I just wish it wasn’t during my exams at school. I feel like I have too much on my plate right now. I’ve even had to stop my soccer practices this week because of all the extra training.
This weekend was all about team bonding. It’s the first time we’ve seen each other since Nationals. We’ve been so used to competing against each other for the last two years and now we are all on the same team helping each other. It’s weird to be on a National Team but still do most of my training at my dojang with my coach or on my own. It’s hard to train with team mates when they are everywhere from B.C. – Nova Scotia. Getting together this weekend was a good way to make sure that we are doing enough training so we don’t let each other down in New Zealand.
38 competitors walked into the University of Quebec in Gatineau ready for an intense weekend. The 4 National coaches were there with a plan for each of us depending on which event we qualified for. I spent most of my time perfecting patterns. I wanted the coaches to see my patterns to make sure there wasn’t anything that I was doing wrong according to them. It was funny since Mr. LeGrow (my coach) worked on his patterns right beside me and you could really see how similar our style is. People keep commenting on it. I take that as a huge compliment. He has always done well at World Championships.
I also worked a bit on some sparring drills but I’ve been doing so sparring lately that I need to balance out what events I need more training for.
After a nice lunch it was back to more patterns for a few hours.
Later in the afternoon we had a treat at the pool. It felt so amazing to loosen up in the water. Every muscle in my body was exhausted. Ms. Bond had circuit training in the pool which was a lot of fun and then we did some more kicking drills with flutter boards. To end it off we played (or tried to play) water polo 🙂
After a quick dry off it was back to the gym to meet with the sports psychologist. I was really looking forward to that part. I won’t tell you what was discussed since that private for Team Canada! 🙂 We are lucky to have so many experienced world championship competitors. We can all learn from their experiences and how they handle the pressure on competing at this level. There were definitely the same concerns amongst the ‘rookies’ so that was a bit reassuring too. It’s just nice to be able to talk to people openly about how we honestly are feel so close to the competition date. It’s hard when my friends can’t really understand what it takes to go through this whole process. They are very supportive but they can’t necessarily relate to it which can sometimes makes me feel alone.
By the end of the day we were all tired both physically and mentally but then we went out for a team dinner. I was very surprised when they all started to sing “happy birthday” to me and brought out desert. It was nice since I didn’t get to do anything with my other friends. It was also special that my brother was able to join us.