Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Off the Runway

I haven't been on the runway that much lately. The throwing sessions that I have had have been super beneficial, though, yay! I've mostly been on the computer (see the new CVOTC Track and Field blog) and getting treatment/waiting for my left SI joint to calm down.
I've also been volunteering my time!
Although I get paid a little bit for it, I don't think of being a tour guide at the training center as a job. It's actually really fun for me; people, surprisingly, always ask different questions. It's neat to be able to share something with them that they've never encountered before, or might not have ever had explained fully to them. A little while ago, a group of athletes from The Larry English L.E.A.D. Foundation came for a tour. We walked them around the training center and showed a video. It never ceases to amaze me how everyone gets mesmerized by footage of inspiring Olympic moments. Watch the video in that link and tell me you weren't just a little misty-eyed.

I started working with Athletes for Hope after the USATF Annual Meeting in the fall of 2009. They help athletes get connected with volunteer opportunities in their communities. It took me a while to figure out which organization I wanted to become a part of and to really get the ball rolling, but last summer I finally attended my orientation as a San Diego Humane Society Volunteer! I got trained in my specific program, Dog Activities, in February, and last Wednesday I had my first hands-on training day, walking these pets under the supervision of an already-trained Volunteer. I'm loving it.

Ian, Stacy, Sandy, Russ and I drove up to LA last Thursday for the USATF Olympians Night at Staples Center before the LA Kings vs. St. Louis Blues hockey game. We met a few athletes and answered some questions about Track and Field and life in general. A small group of people came, and it was really nice to have the time to actually have a conversation with them! Then we got to stay for the game. If you've never been to a professional hockey game, go. It's super fun.

I have my second training day at the Humane Society tomorrow. :) Can't wait to see the puppies!!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Me? Explosive?

Last week was rest week. You read that right; last week was rest week. It wasn't rest Thursday-Friday-Saturday-Sunday,
it was do-what-you-want-when-you-want week.
Mike and I went to hot yoga at the Chula Vista Yoga Center twice, did three recovery workouts (general strength and abs), and I went on a long, leisurely bike ride with Russ! I absolutely loved the time off, and took advantage by getting tons of therapy! Three chiropractic appointments, 2.5 hours of massage, one shoulder mobility torture session, and one acupuncture appointment later, I felt pretty awesome heading into the first week of this new block.

I didn't squat at all last year. Literally, not one time. Our leg lifts were single leg, and mostly step-ups. That means that I hadn't squatted since approximately June of 2009 until I did yesterday. Front squats are on my program this block, and my legs hurt. I look forward to getting those neglected muscles in shape again so I can get some actual work done!

I've written recently that my gymnastics skills are coming along nicely. Our new gymnastics regimen is a lot more about strength than spatial awareness and coordination, like the last block. We did a bunch of posterior-chain strengthening with the Keiser machines today, followed by high bar srength with muscle-ups. The most I had done in a row before today was 3. On my first set, I did 4. Then, Ty said the most he'd ever seen a girl do was 5 in a row. I started out on my second set by doing 6. Then Ty said, "If you do 8 you don't have to do any more." So, I did two more. Then, we figured that there was no reason not to do 10, so I did two more.
Not only did I figure out a skill, but now I'm strong enough to perform it repeatedly...and fairly well!
The most exciting part of the gymnastics workout this afternoon was that, right after I exploded out of the bottom of the movement to pull myself on top of the bar on one of my repetitions, Ty remarked on the power that I had exhibited. I've never, ever thought of myself as an explosive athlete, and to hear him say that and feel powerful and explosive in the skill is really gratifying. I really look forward to applying the stretch-followed-by-explosive-arm-strike feeling that I've gotten in muscle-ups to the javelin.