It is easy for people to miss all the elements that go into building an elite athlete and an elite team. Four years are spent focused solely on a single goal that when all is said and done comes down to two weeks of the biggest emotional and physical roller-coaster ride you can ever experience. It’s less than a year out from the Rio Olympic Games and we are getting down to the business end of things.
Our first Aussie Stingers Olympic Camp was held over two weeks in Sydney. We were based out at Sydney Olympic Park in Homebush. It was here that I saw my first ever senior women’s water polo game when the girls won the Gold at the 2000 Games and one of the reasons why I got into water polo in the first place. It was great to get a reminder of what and why I have spent all these hours, days and years working towards. It can be easy to forgot where it all started and get bogged down it all the hardships and obstacles that can get in your way.
After a disappointing forth finish at the recent World Championships we have a lot of work ahead of us both in and out of the water. While we first week started off relatively moderate in the water, due to everyone coming back off a break. The second week kicked up gears in the pool and out, with plenty of meetings to discuss our plan and the processes we hope to implement to enable us to play at our absolute best individually and as a team.
We have a great bunch of girls involved in this preparation process, which will be important in the coming months. Living in each other’s pockets for the next 10 months will be one of the tests the team will have to face. The honesty and respect that we have for one another will endeavour to help us wade through the minefield that is team sports.
With the first camp done and dusted we are home for a week and then it’s right back into the thick of it with a three week camp at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra.