Funny how sometimes people come into your life at the perfect moment. For weeks I’ve been feeling all “What the hell am I doing even thinking I could ever speed skate”, the doubts growing larger than my ever increasing ass thanks to a complete decline in any training whatsoever.
And then an email pops into my inbox. It’s from a woman named Kaari and she’s been speed skating now for 14 years. Kaari thinks I’m crazy for doing short track – too many people on the track at the same time. I think Kaari is crazy for doing long track because you have to skate about a kajillion miles each race.
That’s a rough estimate.
Here’s where the whole serendipity comes to life. Like me, Kaari couldn’t skate a lick when she started. She spent her entire first season wobbling around the rink on the local lake (her words, not mine) and when she started her second season at the official long track she couldn’t skate all the way around the oval at first. Which, you know, sounds pretty much like where I’m at right now.
Kaari’s been at this for years and now competes in long track meets and has gotten good. She’s offered me training tips and advice but most of all she’s offered me something I lost somewhere along the way this summer…..hope. I’ve been away from the rink for a few months, the new season is fast approaching and that voice in my head is telling me that I’m just going to embarrass myself. The thought of going on the ice with everyone being better than me and me fumbling around and making the entire class wait while I finish up a drill….it’s all been a bit overwhelming for my brain and has left me feeling defeated before the season has even begun. But Kaari has also given me something else. Faith. Faith that I can do this and if I persevere, not only can I do it, I might even become good.
For awhile it was cool being the only 40-something woman I knew who started to speed skate this late in the game. But it’s a hell of a lot cooler knowing Kaari’s out there too.
You can check out Kaari at The Long Track Life.