Skating Competition #1 of season: Learning to Control Flares


Friday Afternoon was the first Figure Skating Competition of my season. Was not a big one… however, it was a test to see how my body would respond with all the medical issues I am currently dealing with.

My test: I was seeing how the preparation would affect my body… How the competition itself would affect my body and the few days after the competition would affect. And to be honest the results were not what I expected.

Starting off, the Monday leading to the competition…I did not have much choreography prepared for this competition. This was due to the fact I spent two days at the hospital in September…and then the following two weeks I was extremely weak that it was hurting just to skate laps and I had to basically start from Step 1.

Then three weeks pre-comp, I was suffering from an injury…that won’t fully get better unless I take a good amount of time off…but with Fibro, I can only take so much time off in one shot before everything else starts flaring…So this has become my second challenge.

(Injury is a right hip/rotator—My jump landing side and my leg that needs to get into positions on all my regular spins and the pressure needed for back spins…so yeah, this kind of screwed me over).

Anyways, the week was progressing fast. I was pulling off 2-6 hours solo and with coaches at a numerous amount of arenas.

Usually for the first two hours on the ice per/day I was suffering the most. I was barely able to stand and every stroke on the ice my body sent nerve shocks throughout my entire body. As time kept going on, the day kept getting easier. By the time I was done skating that day I was knocked out in bed sleeping like a baby until the next morning…And it was actually working.

Thursday, the day before the competition is when my biggest flare hit. But was nothing like I had dealt with during the last competition season.

I did my first full solo run through and I managed to get through it for the most part. However I did skip one of the jumps so only performed 3/4.

This actually had me worried. But it was not the competition. It was just a practice.

I went home after, then I went to a hockey game…and was up until 1am. Once I got home. I was dead tired but was suffering from anxiety and stress…. (If you read my past posts you can see I am a bit of a stress-ball).

9am happened. I was up. Wide awake and could not fall back asleep even if I tried.

I got all my stuff together into the largest NHL sized hockey bag and left. I went to the rink but did not skate. I just sat there and tore off the 10 pounds worth of tape off my skate and took an hour and a half to re-tape them.

Then it was time to head to the afternoon competition. Before leaving, I double checked the stuff in my bag and notice I forgot a few (easy to pick up from the store) essentials. Then I left.

The whole way there I was jamming to music. And was the type of music I use to relax and distress.

I got there after my two coaches did. I was relaxed and slowly got ready. Then my third coach showed up. I started getting nervous. I did not want to let them down.

And normally I don’t tend to stress much before competitions but this was a different story.

Before warm-up I started pacing up and down the hallway out of it.

Once warm-up hit I was missing elements and shaking pretty bad. I had to refocus…I turned and stared at the ice.

The routine itself was not all that bad. I nearly fell after my first jump and probably spent more time trying to catch  myself, than it would have took me to fall and get up again. Besides that the rest of the program went as well as any first program in the first competition of the season would go (missed one complete element-everything else I got points on).

As soon as I got off the ice I walked straight to the wall. I wasn’t able to breathe. I was panting and breathing was hurting MORE than ever.  I was dizzy and it took a good ten minutes before I was able to breathe normal again.

I walked back to the dressing room and was shaking.

I took the rest of the night off to relax and was doing somewhat well. However by 7:30 pm I had an adrenaline crash and I fell asleep in another random spot… (maybe I should write a fun post about what insomnia does to my body).

That night, I did not sleep at all. I was up until I had to go to work and at work it became a rough day. To a point when I ended my shift I just went home and took off the night (still able to go see one of my best friend compete at a competition).

That night I was up 90% of the night again, which resulted in me cancelling another day. However… I had no pain. I was just exhausted. And that was already a positive from all the competitions I dealt with last season.

Yes, it was not all the results I wanted but it is a good step in the right direction and can’t wait to see how this season will pan out.

Again, I am so thankful for my three coaches for always being there for me in the time of need and helping me mentally especially (as this is a key aspect in the sport I struggle with especially dealing with chronic pain everyday of my life). Without my coaches I would currently not be in this sport anymore and in the position I am. They have helped me re-find my love for competing and skating again.

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