This spring break I was privileged enough to travel to Houston, Texas with the greatest team anyone could ask for. The training camp included 24 hours of swimming and 4 hours of dryland training, which totalled 27 hours of hard work. None of which was easy, but nobody gave up. Not one person sat on the deck and watched their teammates complete a set, everyone was working hard and dedicating themselves to each and every set.
Although this camp was a "training" camp, we had so many other things on our list to do while on our travels. The first one, going to the Houston Space Centre! Coach Ian told us so much about the awesome Space Centre and how incredibly huge it is. Soon after we got there, we realized how wrong Ian was – it was small! Not that any of us really cared because it was a good laugh and it will be one of the things that none of us forget for the rest of our lives.
We also had so many great opportunities to see local attractions, like Galveston Beach and Pleasure Pier, while in Houston and I don't think a single one of us that went on this trip will ever forget it. It was great to reunite with the Watson family who were so kind to let us hang out around there home, pick us up from the airport, and feed all of our hungry bellies. The trip would not have been the same without their warm welcoming.
When I think back on the trip, the main thing that resonates with me is the bonding experience our team had. I have been a part of the seals for 8 years now, and I can honestly say I have never felt so close to my teammates. Whether we were doing a kick set, lounging around the hotel, or even sitting in the car for a drive, we all had huge smiles on our face and we would look at each other knowing how lucky all of us were to be in that moment.
Each and every one of us 10 swimmers never would have even had the privilege to go on this training camp if it weren't for Ian and Rhiannon. We are all so glad to have amazing role models such as them, as they are coaching and mentoring us through such an important time in our lives. Not only did Rhiannon coach us, but she also got in the water and swam a few sets with us. We were all very impressed and I think that pushed a lot of us to do better. There are no words to describe how thankful each and every one of us swimmers is to have such fun, loving and dedicated coaches by our sides during this trip.
It's safe to say that spring break 2014 will be a trip that none of us swimmers forget. The overall experience was incredible. If I could recommend the next generation of Seals to go on a training camp trip in the future, I absolutely would. It would allow them to not only become better swimmers but also to develop closer relationships with their teammates. I think it is something that makes a team and the sport special and truthfully there are no regrets. It was a trip of a life time.