6 weeks off 6 weeks on
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After an amazing 2016 season I took some time off and had a little vacation time, but now I am 6 weeks deep into training and things are feeling awesome!
I returned from the Olympic Games to find out the house I was renting was being sold and I needed to vacate immediately. Problem was, I was also being told I had no access to the Olympic Training Center too.
That’s right, nowhere to live or train after the best season of my career.
USATF kicked out my training partner as well as a few others and I wasn’t sure if I would be living in the San Diego area if I couldn’t train at the Olympic Training Center.
I decided to fight the decision and take a vacation to see some friends and family in Oregon.
Over the next 6 weeks I had weekly emails with Athlete Advisory Committee, USATF, former athletes, and coaches regarding my situation until finally something changed. All of a sudden I got access to the Olympic Training Center as an off-site resident, with free medical and food. I just needed to find my own housing.
Not sure how that happened, but I am happy it did. I am going to continue to look into this; I am sure I am not the only athlete that has suffered from bad decisions within USATF, think of how many times things like this have probably happened in the last decade! I want to seek ways to improve the system so things like this never happen to anyone else.
I am still looking for a place (fingers crossed I found one yesterday) but I am training hard.
I decided to ease into things this year. I had a 5 week training block that I just finished with a lot of circuits and hill sprints. During my break I did a few 5k runs to work on some cardiovascular endurance, but now that I am lifting heavy again those runs had to stop.
I am developing a few training tools that I might release in the new future, but I want to test them out a bit and get them a little closer to a production model before I show them off. But they are going to be pretty amazing for my training.
My second block of training just started it’s a lot more focused and detailed, more of a direct regimen. The weights are going up in the weight room and I am throwing a lot.
Main focus this year is to attack the weaknesses that I have, really focus on the rehab/prehab to stay away from injuries, and to not change too much.
Athletes who have breakout years often start thinking about what they can change to improve another 10% the following season. But they have to realize they already accomplished so much. Maybe not changing anything will be best for them. I found something that worked really well for me. I am just going to do it again and see if I can get 1% more out of it.
I had a huge opportunity to be the cover athlete for the OnTrack sports equipment catalog. They brought me up to LA, we did a four hour shoot, tested some of their training products, and had a blast. Jim Reid did all of the shots and they looked awesome. I can’t wait to see the catalog which will come out in January 2017.
When I was doing the shoot I got a call from my agent. He let me know that Team Usain Bolt All-Stars picked me to be on the team for the Nitro Series in Australia. He wanted to know if I was interested.
This is actually a dream of mine that I have had for years. Going to Australia is on my bucket list! I have been searching for meets in Australia for a few years. Even emailed meet directors to see if I could make it work. Now Usain Bolt All-Stars wants me on the team?
I obviously said yes!
I would be joining a great team including Usain Bolt, fellow duck alum Jenna Prandini, Dawn Harper-Nelson, and many more. The full roster hasn’t been released yet, but there should be more details soon!
The Nitro Series is a new format that should be different and fun. I don’t know all the details but I think the team scores points for placing, it could be decathlon point scored so every athlete can compete against each other. I am not sure. I just know it’s going to be awesome.
Best idea I heard was that there will be targets for extra points in the throwing events. You hit a 4m circle at the 80m line and you get a prize. It’s something that has needed to happen in track and field for years!
I will leave for Australia a week before the competition and then compete February 4th, 9th, and 11th in Melbourne Australia!