The two weeks in Seville, Spain with the Irish team were a highlight of the winter. The Irish group is a perpetually cheerful and hardworking group, and their coach Don has a great eye and a fabulous enthusiasm. Plus, my dad and my mom got to join me for the first week of the trip–it was good to see them both and great to check in with my dad on the rowing. It was two weeks of high intensity, quality work–much of it side by side with Sanita, the Irish single sculler. At the end of the trip, we raced 2k, which was a good speed check and ended up reassuring me that winter training seemed to be going well up to that point. The only unfortunate part of the trip was the food in the dining hall. By the end of two weeks, I was craving vegetables! (Sidenote: there is a decent amount of quality ice-cream in Seville. Thank goodness!)
One week ago I returned to Boston with its early spring weather, and I came to the conclusion that I would take 40 degrees over 90 degrees any day. I am thrilled to be home on the Charles River! Even despite all the recent weather frustrations. I think that returning home for a three week block of training leading up to trials was a great idea. It is wonderfully reassuring to be back in a familiar routine with a training plan designed for me and with my teammates by my side. I am doing workouts that I have done in previous years while gearing up for selection regattas, and I think that is the best way for me to prepare for Olympic Trials. That being said, if someone could magically eliminate all wind over 15mph, I wouldn’t complain.