I remember standing on the beach and watching the paddlers train hard and proud. They looked fantastic and that was my encouragement. Seeing them wearing the Australian shirts representing Australia and knowing that they are going half way across the world to paddle. I thought to myself, “Hey I want to do this too”. They inspired me to paddle with heart and soul.
I was very happy when I made the Australian Junior team when I tried out and ever since then, it has been a rollercoaster for both my parents and myself. Training, both physically and mentally is hard but it is worth it! During our last training camp in Tallebudgera in May, I realized I was paddling on the same water, and looking across to shore where I had stood and imagined myself representing Australia two years ago. However, this time was different, I am in the boat and hopefully I am an inspiration to the audience. I am getting ready to take off to Hungary and represent Australia. I did not think I could make it with all the ups and downs but with strong support from my family and Broadwater team I have been able to get through it all.
Training has been really hard for me to fulfill as a school student who is also very enthusiastic about schoolwork (haha). However, I have tried to do my best to train and study at the same time. I have already sprained my ankle and hurt my knees and broken a couple of fingers, but hey that is reality. Being an Australian representative is a once in a lifetime chance and a huge honor. I have also enjoyed the company in the team. I get to meet new people and make new friends. That is one of the good things about Dragon boating. It is not an individual sport where you only focus on yourself. You have the opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and interact with other people. The feedback that I have received from the coaches so far has also been positive and greatly appreciated. I do miss my food though and cannot wait for this event to finish so I can stuff my face with Hungry Jack’s on the way home from training….
Sometimes during training my body is telling me to Stop! Stop! But my brain is saying, “One heart! One soul! One team! One goal! We are, We are Australia!!”.
I am looking forward to seeing more of my Broadwater team members stepping up to the challenge and representing Australia in the future.