I have just emerged from what can best be described as a “death nap”–the type of naps that are utterly necessary but which leave one feeling more like they’ve just been flattened by a bus than rested.  It’s Saturday, which means I am enjoying some highly coveted time off.  We haven’t had much since we’ve been at camp, as the schedule has been starting on “Smonday” (Sunday is the new Monday) with three full sessions, and “off” time is limited to Saturday afternoons or a full off day every other Saturday.  The training has been good and consistent, and we’ve only been forced off the water just once so far–last Friday the wind blew up as the scullers were warming up for some race pieces on the water, Ellen and I midway through the warmup looped back up to the dock to find that the bearably choppy water we had launched in was now a seething whirlpool of death intent on catapulting us out of our little singles.  We just made it to the dock without capsizing, but only thanks to the help of our sweep teammates who were completely safe and dry on land, waiting to catch us with grins and open arms.

Minnesota Varsity with Team USA!

I was really lucky to get to spend some time with my little sister last week when she and the rest of the Golden Gophers came out to San Diego for their winter training camp.  Though they did their training in the Mission Bay area, Molly and some of the Minnesota staff ventured down to the OTC one afternoon to get my special walking tour and also grab some passenger seats in the coaching launch for practice. The next night, I rallied a group of the US women from the training center to meet up with the Minnesota girls for dinner in Old Town, and it was awesome!  We hit up Cafe Coyote and enjoyed talking to all the girls about training, rowing, and other good stuff.  They are a great group, and it was a really fun way for us to spend our Friday night.

As for the other company we are keeping on a daily basis, the men’s rowing group is considerably pared down to just a 4X and 4- camp at the moment making the boathouse very cozy and tolerable–and with the removal of the US Canoe/Kayak program from CVOTC (to OKC) we have a little more room to spread out and also less day-to-day traffic on the lake.  With a six-laned buoyed course set to be placed sometime this winter in preparation for NSRI, I would say that things at Otay have upgraded a few points this year which is great news for us.  We will have free reign over the boathouse over the next few days as the men have departed for a short camp in Northern California.

Up on the main campus, the training center has been full and busy while we’ve been here, with a consistently large group of athletes coming in and out for training. We’ve had junior soccer and volleyball, men’s rugby, paralympic cycling, a track and field coaches’ conference, women’s field hockey, and men and women’s beach volleyball roaming around the center, in addition to the many familiar faces of the resident track and field, archery and BMX populations.  Unsurprisingly, the men’s rugby team has become quite popular with the women’s rowing team–if even just thanks to the work of their social ambassador, Rocco.

Now that we’re inside the 200-days-to-go mark for Opening Ceremonies, the excitement level is definitely starting to pick up.  As hopefuls, we are receiving information from the USOC about Games registration, as well as having to undergo the Olympic Ambassador Program (a combination of Games-specific education and logistics, media training, and working with former USA Olympians–including Bob Kaehler and Dan O’Brien–to prepare for a Games experience).  I am also working closely with USRowing and Boathouse Sports to begin outlining and designing the Olympic Gear kit for this year’s Team (note: I am just an athlete representative in this case, this in no way indicates my nomination to the Team).  It is a very exciting time looking forward to the 2012 Games, but it is also bringing back a lot of memories from 2008 during the lead-up to selection for Beijing.  I was in a very different place then, but that’s a different blog post.

QUESTION:  I’d like to start working on some video while I’m here–what do people want to see?  Leave suggestions in a comment and I’ll get to work on it.

Long Live the Dream,


12 thoughts on “Week Three Update: Winter Camp

  1. Hi Megan, I’m running a competition for junior rowers in the UK, asking them to make a short film about something that inspires them to row – it would be really interesting to see your take on this! check out Knowing Rowing on Facebook./Twitter :-)

  2. I’d love to see something like last year’s as well :) So great…it reminds me that training IS, in fact, REALLY fun…even when it’s not :)

  3. I would love to see another winter training video like the one you did last year! As a rower myself it is so inspiring to see what such amazing rowers like yourselves are doing, and the one you made last year was so funny. I have shared your youtube channel with my whole team and they all love your videos!

  4. Way to go! Would love to see some video footage with more of your teamates, the joking around is great, or just a day in the life of would be awesome.

    1. Dear Megan Kalmoe,

      I just wanted to say that YOU’RE AWESOME. Keep on keepin’ on! Also, I wouldn’t mind seeing a day in the life, either… but filming a whole day is probably impossible for hopefuls like you (the amazing kind!), so I’d definitely be okay with seeing only a minute or two. Don’t forget to sleep, by the way.

      Cheyene (a very big fan of yours)

  5. Just came across your blog recently and I love getting the inside perspective. As a local, we often take for granted the many things our city has to offer. Of course we can all take a tour of the Olympic Training Center, but your blog brings the Center to life for us. Keep blogging and I look forward to your videos.

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