It has definitely been quite a while since I last sat down to write a post, and this is an appropriate time as any to talk about what has happened since my last post.
Upon my return from Europe, I took three weeks off from anything related to walking to allow my body and mind to recover from what was a very long and taxing season. During that time I began studying for the LSAT, a standardize test required to be taken by aspiring law students. I recently wrote the test on December 3rd. I am confident that things went well, and I will now await my results which should be released in January. All my applications have also been sent out, so I am hopeful that I will receive an acceptance letter for the Fall 2012 Term.
Although studying for the LSAT was a priority during the past couple of months, I also return to my training ways 9 weeks ago. Training has been progressively building in the level of intensity. Currently, my training plan has transitioned from a base type to one that combines both mileage and speed along with strengthening at the gym. This block of training is planned accordingly to ensure that both Evan and I head down to Australia as prepared as possible for what will be a very exciting and challenging few months of training.
Our trip to Australia, a 3 month trip, will provide a great opportunity to train in warm weather and avoid our cold, wet Vancouver winters. Our first month in Australia will entail taking part in a study that will test the effects of “Living High, Training Low”. The study will see a group living in CAT Altitude tents at 3,000 meters and training ‘low’ in the town of Thredbo at 1,300 meters. The control group, on the other hand, will be “Living High, Training High”, meaning that they will be sleeping under the normal Thredbo altitude and also training at that same altitude. Although there are numerous studies done that look at the benefit of Altitude training, the AIS, Australia Institute of Sport, is looking to further extend on that research with this study. I am certainly very excited to take part in this study, as it is likely to have some benefits leading to the race in Hobart, Tazmania on the 25th of February. We will continue to train in Canberra for the remainder of the three months.
On another note, the AAP (Athlete Assistance Program), also referred to as ‘Carding’, which is administered by Sport Canada, was released in November. Some great news came out of this announcement, as four race walkers were selected to this program: Evan Dunfee, Ben Thorne, Rachel Seaman, and myself. Both Rachel and myself were nominated to receive the C-1 Senior Level Carding, while Evan and Ben will both receive Developmental Cards. The Carding system provides athletes with the much-needed financial support. If you are interested to learn about the AAP system take a look at the Government of Canada website: http://www.pch.gc.ca/pgm/sc/pol/athl/index-eng.cfm
Also during this past month, we had our annual Racewalk West team retreat in Whistler. We had the opportunity to plan out our season while also spending some quality time bonding as a group. I will put up some of the pictures for everyone to see.
Finally, perhaps the most exciting news of all, I want to share the news that yesterday was the birth of my first nephew, Kai Gomez, a baby samurai indeed. Both my brother Iker and his wife Kaori have been waiting anxiously for this moment over the past 9 months with their arms wide open to welcome this new baby. My parents also had the opportunity to be in Japan where my brother lives to also welcome Kai into this world. Here is a picture:
The excitement of being an uncle and beginning my preparations for the Olympics has been the best start to this new season. I hope that you guys are as excited as I am to get this season going. There are just under 8 months left until the London Olympics, and I can definitely begin to feel the excitement building. As you can see with this post, the ground work is now laid out properly to ensure that my preparations for next summer are as good as possible. I would like to thank Sport Canada, Athletic Canada and the AIS for facilitating this upcoming season’s training with the financial support and training opportunities that I am receiving.
For those of you who are active on Twitter you can now follow me there @InakiGomezG.