Off Season Update: Home, Training, Commonwealth Prep
It's been a while since my last blog post! My goal is ultimately to release one post per week, which, compared to the nearly-daily Squash on Squash blog posts I used to write when I was back in college, doesn't seem like a lot!
I didn't get around to writing a World Champs, El Gouna, or Canadian Nationals recap, but I did post about them on Instagram. If you would like to see more detailed & frequent blog posts about tournaments, please comment or send me a DM and let me know!
Off Season 2022
Relaxing in Victoria, BC
After the final at Canadian Nationals in Vancouver, I returned to Victoria BC for a few days to see family and friends. It was so nice to take my foot off the gas for a few days, both mentally and physically. I still went to the gym and stayed active, but I only did one session a day, and prioritized enjoyment above all else! I also slept a ton... I felt like I was a teenager again!
Since summer 2021 was full of tournaments (pushed back from Covid), the past few weeks have been first true glimpse of an off-season since Covid hit in 2020. Mentally and physically, that's a long time to remain in squash training mode!
When I returned to NYC, I knew I wanted to keep some sort of a non-squash training routine, (for mental health as much as physical!), and for this I needed consistency and convenience.
Enter... my Pain Alcove!
I managed to find a basic TacX trainer for $20 on Craigslist, and also purchased a trainer tire. Easy, cheap, and convenient setup... not to mention, the best view in the house!
Whenever I want to improve my general conditioning and crave consistency, I turn to the spin bike. It's always a good sweat, it's low impact, and it's efficient! While I love being outside, going for a proper ride in NYC is not always the most pleasant experience, since you need to be on your guard all the time. Plus let's face it- nothing will quite compare to riding in scenic Victoria, BC!
Literally outside our doorstep there is a square turf field, which can host two 8x8 games side by side. For the past few months, I've been enviously watching the games, wishing I could jump in and play from time to time.
Last weekend, Jaymie and I went outside to kick the ball around (for the first time!), and bumped into a few players who were preparing for an organized pickup game. They were short a few players, so we happily joined in! It was just the right mix of competitive and fun, and no one was trying to slide tackle or be unnecessarily physical and aggressive. Our adductors and hamstrings were sore for days, but personally I didn't mind because I just loved being back out there playing!
I was a sweaty mess playing in this humidity and heat!!!
Strength at Body Space Fitness
One of the best parts about being back in the city is popping down to my original place of work, Body Space Fitness. When I first signed on as a S&C coach at BSF, I knew nothing (except for the fact that I loved fitness!). I was a blank slate. Thanks to the excellent mentorship, hands-on training, and guidance from Kelvin, Fran, and the rest of the BSF team, I absorbed their information like a sponge, and fully credit them for my smart and practical approach to strength & conditioning.
Being able to train at Body Space not only helps me as a professional athlete, but also as a coach. Every time I go in, I learn something new. As a professional athlete, I am increasingly aware of the significance of learning something that can make you even just 1% better. As a coach, I think this also rings true. Just because you aren't competing, doesn't mean you shouldn't be continually striving to learn and improve. I love the fact that I can directly apply what I learn at BSF not only to my own progress, but to help my clients as well.
Perhaps my biggest news of the past couple weeks is being named to the Commonwealth Games team to represent Canada! The games will be held in Birmingham, UK from July 28th-Aug 8th, and I'll be competing in singles, mixed doubles, and women's doubles.
It's only 4 weeks away, so while I'm going to continue a lot of my off-season S&C work, I'm also going to start getting back on court now.
PS. I was recently interviewed by our local Victoria newspaper, the Times Colonist, regarding the upcoming games. You can find the article here!
Alright- that's all from me now. I've got to jump on the bike and do a session, then work on some Instagram content. Usually I am quite consistent on Instagram, but in the past few weeks I have been busy working with clients, programming, and making improvements to the Squashletic app, so now I need to get back into the swing of all things content!