Sept. 15, 2009

After almost a full 24 hours (I think the clock might sit at 22 and change) of travel, we’ve made it to the first of our hotels. We should remain here for a week as we get acclimated to the area.

As of yet, nothing too exciting has happened… unless you want to count canceled flights, lost luggage, and the team splitting up into three separate groups! So not to bore with lengthy anecdotes I’ll keep it quick. When those of us traveling from Colorado Springs got to the airport, we were met with the news of a canceled flight. From there, some of us, me included, took a flight to Denver and then another to Chicago to meet with our original itinerary. Others remained in Colorado Springs and made it onto a later flight to Chicago. The last group ended up not being able to slip onto either flight and had to try and give it a go the next day. From there things seemed to go smoothly until we arrived here in Denmark. Of the ones that physically made it in with our group, four of us came up empty handed at the luggage carousel! To me, this trip is a prime example why its good to have an acclimation camp (a couple days on site) before a major event. Even though some of us, me included, might not have our luggage, at least we don’t need it immediately.

Even though it was a bit chilly outside, the sun was brightly shining when we arrived. Our hotel accommodations are as expected (small European beds and everything). The rest of the team (ones not traveling from Colorado) got in earlier than us and were already hanging out in the hotel when we arrived. Since it was late and the sun was already going down there was no time to go explore the city. I guess I’ll have to save that for tomorrow.

Here are a couple selected pics from today.
On the bus On the bus In the rooms

Sept. 13, 2009

We take off for Denmark tomorrow. I’ve been spending most of my time today getting prepared to be out of my office for two weeks while I’m at the world championships. Its hard to believe all the little things that must be done to prepare for such a trip. I’m used to taking a few days here and a few days there, but the two week trips always seem to take a bit more effort.

The last couple of weeks leading up to now have been rather interesting. We’ve been training hard and making sacrifices in our attempt to be the best in the world. Its a funny thing actually, when I speak with most people about the world championships they sometimes ask me about the next Olympics. Even though I never say it, I almost always think about the old US team slogan “It’s not every four years, it’s every day”. The interesting thing is that it really is just about every day. In a normal week we train six days out of seven. In a normal year we probably train 42 weeks out of 52. Even though these last couple of weeks have been especially intense, they pale in comparison to the day in and day out that we push to be better versions of ourselves both on and off the mat. As I prepare to go to these world championships I’m not thinking about how hard the past couple weeks have been, I’m thinking about how much fun I’ve had as I’ve been struggling and straining to be a better version of myself and how proud I’m going to be when I step out on the mat to represent my country on this stage for the first time. Should be a fun time.

On another note, my plan is to get lots of pictures while we’re over there and try to give a slight glimpse into the overall experience. What’s most likely to happen is that the updates will get shorter as the time draws nearer (just a heads up), but hopefully I’ll still have something entertaining to mention.