01 January 2014

Post US Olympic Trials...my thoughts

This is truth: "Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure (and lots of failure, ha)...than to take rank with those poor souls who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat." ~Theodore Roosevelt

photo cred: Hilary Barreto
As many of you know by now...the Road to Sochi for #TeamSwiderPeltz to compete with TeamUSA ended yesterday. Jeffrey gave his all in his 1500m yesterday, skating a well executed race which unfortunately ended up disqualified. The DQ was because of a new rule that doesn't make too much sense-crossing the line on the straights. You can cross it once and be ok, but 2x will get you DQ'ed. But he was happy with the race, leaving nothing on the line, though hoping for 1.5 seconds faster.

For me, reality is that I've not been able to get back to the shape I was in 4 years ago after the injuries that have plagued me these last 4 years, even though my body is currently free of injury. But that didn't stop me from racing my heart out these last days and trying to prove I can overcome obstacles...I "died" trying, as my uncle would say. My 1500m yesterday was nowhere near my potential. Not being able to race a race that I know is Olympic potential is heartbreaking, especially when I know what it takes to make an Olympic Team. But though my races were mediocre, getting messages from people back home and across the US who were cheering us on throughout the Olympic Trials/screaming at the TV while watching us was the coolest. We were blown away from all your support...I just wish Jeffrey and I could have made this 2014 Olympic team as way to say thank you for all your support over these years. :)

my back MRI...fall 2012, with 3 degenerative disks
Some history...to those that don't know about my injuries, in the fall of 2010 I severely tore my left hamstring that I never fully recovered from due to a misdiagnosis. I struggled in training for a couple years because of that scar tissue, prohibiting mobility and causing nerve pain. I then partially re-tore that same hamstring this past spring, which ultimately tore that old scar tissue and as result I am back to normal. It's a miracle. In the fall of 2011, I came down with a tibia stress fracture from which I came back to make the World Cup team. And then last year, I was doing some foam rolling recovery when I clamped up my back, forcing us to get an MRI and finding out I had an old chipped vertebrae from a short track fall 6 years ago. That had caused my back to spazz up and over these last 6 years, wore down 3 discs that are completely degenerative now. It's taken a full year, but with amazing therapists I've worked with, I can honestly say I am currently in no pain and the body feels great. But after all those trials, my consistency in training and building a good skating base was jeopardised. 

I don't regret the path I've taken...sure it's been terrible at times and I've been on the verge of walking away from speedskating, but there is nothing like persevering when you're at your worst. It only makes you better...
Romans 5:1-5: "Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us."
photo cred: Hilary Barreto
So what now? well, that is up to the Lord...both Jeffrey and I are currently discussing our next endeavours. If that'd be going back to school to finish off our college education at Wheaton College, skating the rest of the season, doing some sort of sports ministry, or for me, possibly helping out in Sochi, Russia for a company that would want a past Olympians experience, it is yet to be decided. And we are praying for that direction...

We will continue to keep up this blog for sure...giving you continual life experiences from our lives via video, pictures, words, and lessons we've been learning along the way. And who knows, you just might be seeing #TeamSwiderPeltz train for the next Olympic Team in PyeongChang 2018. It is definitely a possibility :)

photo cred: Hilary Barreto
Again to our sponsors, those who gave their services, and the people who gave to #TeamSwiderPeltz financially...thank you for getting us to the Olympic Trials. We were racing for you this past week and it brought us joy that you were able to watch us on NBC...may your journey with us not stop here, but continue on. For we cannot live life on our own...your support has meant the world to us. You'll always be a part of #TeamSwiderPeltz!

To God be the Glory forever and ever...

God bless you all and Happy New Year's! 

Nancy Jr.

1 Corinthians 9:25

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