Dual sport adventure
I’ve done something I have loved for the last 24 years of my life; I’ve been on skates since I was 2 years of age, and speed skates since I was 10. It’s second nature; like riding a bike. All I love to do is skate in circles, search for jeans that fit, and make jokes about how my body is normal from the hip – up, and I have no idea what the bottom half is doing. That is all about to change.
We often get stuck in routine and become so comfortable in the search for what we are really meant to do, with this human experience we are having, on Earth. Our souls drag us in places that we should explore, our hearts tell us whether we like it or not, and our conscious decision making is what keeps us in a place…or in this case, throws you back in the dark. Oh, how I am loving the uncomfortable right now.
I went home to Toronto after the Olympics, to spend some time with my family and help my mother recuperate after shoulder surgery. I was sitting down on my last day in a cafe, and after realizing that I had been mentally recovering from a long season that kept pushing on me (as I was resisting), I had come to the conclusion that I wanted to spice my life up a bit. I didn’t know how that would happen in that exact moment.
After careful re-evaluation, brain picking, self-induced heart break, and a lot of dumb question asking, a few weeks had passed and I had finally figured it out! I have come to realize that what gives me joy in this exact moment, is throwing myself back into a place of growth, where I am challenged, scared (sh*tless) and ecstatic. I need to be filled with happiness + gratitude, in all that I do, or I can not fully commit, or contribute to my environment. This decision came to me, and I found myself being like a little kid in a candy store. Something as plain as riding a bike. Yes, riding on two wheels.
Here’s the deal; I’m going to keep it short. Why do something you’ve always done, to get what you have always gotten? Yes, we live in homes, and own materialistic items, have relationships, friends and anchors that keep us stable in a city… why not change that up sometimes?
I am proud of myself for making one of the toughest decisions, to leave the sport of speed skating for 1 (YES, only one) season, to swap my full body skin suits, for a short sleeved skin suit, in pursuit of spinning my way toward the Tokyo Summer Olympics.
I’m an athlete, what other goals did you expect? I very rarely talk about my goals out loud, because I like to grind behind closed doors and show you what I got, when game day comes around. But knowing that the questions will follow, I am telling it all to you now. I also can’t do something unless I fully aim to get to the top. I am just not designed that way. You either go full on, in life, or you may as well not bother. I may land short, but I will be so glad I gave it my all. I will also return to skating, more fit than I have ever been, and I also have absolutely no stress in training and competition anymore.
I have reached one of my (many) athletic career goals of competing at the Olympic Winter Games, and now it’s time to train and compete with
F R E E D O M.
It is now time to truly put the hammer down, and do something for the L O V E of the sport. It is simple; I love riding my bike; Olympics, or no Olympics. The glide on ice and my time spent riding, are two of my three places where my mind comes to a complete stop. I breathe in and out and I am 137.5% present. Such love.
I am giving this a full shot for one season, to see how it goes. I am now living in Vanouver full time, training with a great group of athletes and have my eyes set on Canadian National Championships at the end of September.
Skating and I aren’t parting ways for at least another 6 years. I truly am lucky to have a healthy body, strong drive, and the ability to compete at the highest level. I am no where near done with speed skating, and when the time comes, I will finish my speed skating career strong. This is a temporary change, in the right direction, that needs to take place, because we don’t grow from comfortable spaces where routine is stagnant.
There is this pure love and joy I have for track cycling, that I never knew existed. As a speed skater, I turn left all the time, so I may as well keep turning left on the bike.
Enjoy the RIDE, and follow along for more on my instagram @speed_skater.