Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Shoulder Update

Saw a physiotherapist last night. She told me to do the following: no swimming, no dragon boating, no push-ups, no bench presses, in fact - no weights with my right arm at all for the next few weeks, I can do yoga - but no poses that put pressure on that arm/shoulder, also I can do these front and lateral arm lifts with a smelly rubber band thing.

Because I'm kind of an impatient person (in case you didn't already know that about me - haha) I asked how long it might take before this healed. In return she asked me how long it's been hurting. My response, about 5 or 6 months. She said, "there's your answer." And then I thought a bunch of stuff I'm not allowed to say here because certain people (Hi Mom & Dad!) might get offended.

Other shoulder updates: got an x-ray done last week and will have some specialist look at that when I see him in DECEMBER (glad I'm not in any hurry ...). Went for a combined osteopath/acupuncture treatment which really seemed to have done some good up until the visit with the physio yesterday when all the tests I was made to perform aggravated the shoulder a whole lot. So much that I even followed orders and iced my shoulder even though all I wanted to do was put heat on it and I'll do the same until the physio tells me I can add heat again.

Stupid ice. It's not bad enough that summer's over and that means winter's coming, now I have to purposely make myself cold. Poop.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

End of another season

As tired as I've been, as sore as I've been and as much complaining and whining as I've done over the last few months, suddenly the dragon boat season is over and I'm wondering where the last 4 months have gone.

This weekend was our last dragon boat competition of the 2010 season. We ended on a bittersweet note. While we did improve a lot this season, we didn't quite meet our goals. For me though, I do feel very proud of what we did accomplish. That we improved overall at the competitions (no final B this year) and are becoming more consistent as a team, this I think is worth remembering. We beat some good teams and some great teams, this is also worth remembering. That we still have a long way to go is also very important and I think will help to keep us motivated during the long winter training months ahead.

For now, I am resting all week. No gym, no running, no biking, nothing. And I am already missing the energy and excitement of my team members, and the adrenaline of a race.

Wait until they see us next year ...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Hotel Review

If you're ever in the Toronto area and need a budget hotel, do not stay at Casa Mendoza. Here's my review (see review by StephanieT7 - that's me!).

Oh yeah, and a few things I forgot to mention:
No bedside table, just some leftover wooden box, painted brown, with barely enough room to fit the telephone. One bedside reading lamp (for 2 beds?). No overhead lighting, just a seris of misplaced lamps with bare bulbs hanging from them. No suitcase rack/holder, so there was no place to set my bag down except the filthy floor. There was one chair - it was a rickety old wooden bistro chair that had seen better days. I set my bag on that and wouldn't have trusted it to actually use it as seating for a person. There were 2, what shall I call them ... coffee tables? One was a piece of log, the other was another leftover piece of painted wood that had been nailed together.

Right, think I'm done.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Great White North Challenge

Update: final results from GWN are posted here.


What a weekend! In some ways it was not what I was expecting, in others it more than met my expectations.

The hotel, pardon me, motel (that should've tipped me off): did not meet expectations. Apparently some people don't understand the definition of clean/safe. Old rusty, squeaky (double, not queen) beds, sliding doors to balconies that don't lock, holes in the wall directly to the outside, ants in the bathroom, old toilet pipes coming out of the wall, broken toilet paper holder, no towel holder, mirror sitting on the floor, SHAG "rug" ... the list goes on.

The races: exceeded expectations. Competition was tough. We raced some of the best races ever but it still wasn't good enough to make the cut for Final A. We finished 2nd in Final A consolation, which means 8th place overall. The team was hoping for a top 12 finish, we achieved that. Some were hoping for a top 6 finish, we didn't achieve that. This does not surprise me.

I hate being the voice of doom on the team but I just don't think we're there yet as a team. We still have a fair number of new people on the team, whose technique isn't the same as the rest of us, and our timing is still a big problem for the team.

Continuing, the race site: met expectations. It was big, there were lots of trees for shade, lots of portable toilets with portable sinks, decent selection of food stands, some shopping, good places to watch the races, good marshaling area, great announcer (dude must have no voice left by the end of the weekend).

Team spirit: met expectations. Although we, for the most part, did stay together, it felt like there was a little bit of team spirit missing. I wonder if that had any effect on our races, or if it was as a result of our performance. It's hard to say. Funnily enough, after all the brou-ha-ha in Ottawa about needing to have a team dinner, it was decided that we wouldn't do that in Toronto. What ended up happening of course, was that 22 of us had a most-of-the-team dinner, even if it did mean eating at 3 separate tables. The table I was at (with 12 of us) was the best (of course!) we had a great meal together and then went out for dessert afterward to the fanciest bubble tea place I have EVER seen. Apparently they take their bubble tea a whole lot more seriously in Toronto than here in Montreal.

All in all I had a great weekend. It was sunny, it was not hot but it didn't rain (ok, a few little drops but not enough to complain about). Any plans to retire from competitive dragon boating are naturally gone, again. What is it about competing, or more precisely losing, that makes me want to paddle harder, train harder, compete more??? Whatever it is, I want more and next weekend I'll get it. Last competition of the season, Quebec Cup will take place at the Basin. See you there!

Friday, September 03, 2010

New favourite song

Have been listening to this song over and over and over again for the past week. Can't get enough of it. In fact, the entire album is pretty awesome.