The 2020/21 competition season is theoretically just around the corner. In a COVID-free year, we would be in the final preparation period before the competition season kicks off in late-November or early-December. At this time last year, my teammates and I were in Sweden competing in Norwegian National Championships before heading to the first World Cup of the year in Ruka, Finland. This year, I am at home in Park City, UT roller skiing and Nordic skiing on the little bit of snow that has fallen so far. While I’d like to believe that my competition season will kick off soon, with the Coronavirus pandemic and the lack of snow, I can’t say I know the first time I will put a bib on this year.
Even with competitions being a big ol’ question mark at this point, I am training as if we will get to compete soon. So far, one World Cup has been “postponed” (cancelled?) and our first domestic event in Steamboat Springs, CO has been cancelled, so the first event of the season will hopefully be a Continental Cup in Park City in mid-December, but with the trends of the pandemic I am essentially just waiting for the day that that event is cancelled as well. So, will we compete in December? Maybe. January? Maybe. July of 2021? Maybe.
In the past few weeks I’ve been asked if it’s hard to stay motivated when they’re may not be any competitions for the foreseeable future. And while, yes, it is difficult not knowing when I may compete next, my motivation to train and improve hasn’t wavered. If this year has taught me anything, it’s that adaptation is more important than any other trait. With the competition schedule changing constantly, my goals and approach have adapted to the changing schedule. Originally, my goal was to compete at the World Cup in Ruka in just two weeks. After I didn’t get named to the World Cup team for the first competitions, my goal adapted to be on the podium at the Continental Cup in Park City. With that event being up in the air, I have realized that my goal is to show up ready to win at whichever event I get to compete in. Being able to adapt my goals has helped me stay motivated because it has allowed me to change what I am pushing for. I show up to training every day motivated to make myself ready for the first event that I compete in this season, whether it happens in December, February, or the Olympics in 2022. Adapting to a changing competition schedule may change my results-based goals, but it doesn’t change my motivation to be competing at my best, whenever that may be.
Who knows what this competition season will look like? Anyone who says they know is probably lying. I know that between now and the end of the season plans will change, and competitions will get cancelled. But I also know that I am going to train as if I am going to win my first competition of the season. And who knows? Maybe I’ll be on top of the podium sooner than I think.
Follow along as I post updates about training, traveling, competing, school, and life in general.