Hello Everyone and Happy Belated New Year!

Wow, another couple of months have passed since my last blog.

I just finished a back to back 3 weeks of meets and feel that the season is going well.

I started off with the Hill’s Classic, where I wouldn’t say I had my most impressive scores, however, I took some risks by trying much harder skills and that is a huge step for me. I fell on my full-in and didn’t quite regroup for the second pass, so I had two falls during that routine. I finished strong though. I still just need a little more time on my full-in to get it consistent. On bars I tried my new twisting dismount and it was a success (fell on my Hecht though). On Beam I did a great job and made it to event finals and had a good vault as well. It is such a huge help going to meets where there is a lot of great competition, because it really does help push me to grow.

My second meet was the Sand Dollar Classic in Florida where I had my highest level 10 score to date, a 37.5. The highlight was my 9.8 floor routine. This was a great comeback competition for a couple of reasons. One, my All-Around score was 2 points higher than the weekend before and two, this location at the ESPN Center was where I fractured my foot two years ago during competition. It was an awesome meet and trip to Florida. I had my Florida Family Fan Club there, which was extra special for me!!!

My third meet was this past weekend at my home gym. My all around score was lower, however, I feel I made some good strides. I started off with what I and my coaches felt was my best bar routine yet. My handstands were much better, I caught my Hecht and did my twisting dismount all in one routine. The score didn’t seem to reflect it, but I think you’ll see the improvement from the previous meet in the videos. I also tried a twisting Yurchenko, which wasn’t my best, but again, this is growth on my part. I had a nice solid beam routine and on floor I had a pretty good routine with the exception of an overly powerful double back causing me to have a couple steps out of bounds.

It’s been a busy three weeks, but overall a lot of good lessons learned as I move forward into my February meets.

I will be competing at the Buckeye Classic in a couple of weeks on Thursday, February 13th and Friday, February 14th during the Elite Qualifier Competitions. Pursuing the Elite gymnastics path is something I started just a few months ago with Prestige Gymnastics. I never had this level of training before. In fact, I am just now learning how to do the uneven bars on the FIG settings, which is a great challenge for me, because I have always done bars on the farthest settings. I have also just recently started learning the compulsory routines, but I am going to go the Elite Qualification meet with some of my teammates just to see where I am at. With that said, I know that I am pretty far behind in certain areas of the Elite Path, but I always want to be pushing myself to grow and get out of my comfort zone. I never want to look back with regret that I never gave it a shot. It is my goal to be the best Level 10 Gymnast that I can be, and if I am able to achieve the Elite Gymnastics status that will just be a nice bonus. I continue to be a tough competitor and have my sights set on Nationals this year.

Upon reflection, looking back at the last 3 weeks, I feel that I am very blessed to have the supportive coaches and teammates that I have. It’s indescribable, but I will give you an example. On my last pass on floor, I felt like I was in a football stadium during the Super Bowl filled with cheering fans as my teammates provide me with the extra adrenaline I needed to finish a strong routine. If this is any indication of what college gymnastics is like, I cannot wait to be a part of such a team atmosphere. It’s an amazing feeling to be a part of such a strong team of sisters. My throat actually hurts after meets from cheering so much for each of my girls. Nothing but love for each of them.

As always, I could not do what I do without the constant love and protection from my Heavenly Father and my family and friends. They mean the world to me.

Right now I am reading a great book called Wisdom Walks – Sports Edition and I would encourage all of my fellow athlete friends and supporters to read it too. It’s life changing.

In closing, you are not always going to feel like you are at the top of your game, however if you can take away at least one thing from each experience and use it as an opportunity for growth, it’s worth the pain.

Love and Hugs,