“Leaving Calgary was easily the most difficult decision I’ve made to date. To leave everything you’ve known and grown up with is nerve-racking and stressful. As much as you need to downplay your emotions to convince yourself that the decision you made is the right one, there’s a lot of days when I struggle getting out of bed or completing workouts because the heartbreak of leaving home weighs too much on my emotions. Dedicating your life to sport isn’t difficult, leaving everything you love is.”
That was a paragraph I wrote in January for iRun Magazine’s first issue of 2018. And much of that still stays true. I took so much pride in being a Calgarian, having graduated from a technical school that is not known for cross country running then progressing to be a pretty decent athlete, working full-time and developing a well-balanced life, being involved within the community and putting time towards the development of high school cross country, and riding under the radar until race day. My immediate family lives in Calgary and being away from them has impacted me the most.
The group at Speed River has welcomed me like a family member since day 1. From the coaching staff to the integrated support team to the athletes, everything blends together and works, making the group a complete package to benefit an athlete of any discipline. Being immersed in a track culture that focuses on individual improvement and community development is motivating, and taking part in track workouts when the sprint group and field group is working out too are some of my favourite.
Guelph is a fantastic little city. I really like it here because the city is pretty, it’s easy to get around, the city has a hip vibe, there’s an abundance of trails to adventure on, and the exterior styling of houses is different than out west, offering a nice change in scenery. Guelph is also close enough to Toronto so it’s easy to drive in and hang out for a day or catch a sporting event, yet it’s far enough from Toronto that you can enjoy the smaller city living.
The combination of the small city and the training group sold me on the move and my time in Guelph will always be remembered as a highlight. Although it took some time to find out if the move to Guelph was the right one or not, I can say with complete honesty that it was.
I enjoy Guelph but it’s not home, so on May 8th, I am moving back to Calgary.
For those younger athletes or college athletes that are reading this, my advice is to give post-collegiate athletics a shot. It’s worth it. Find yourself a group that will work with you to achieve your goals and a group where you can work with others to achieve their goals, find a location that you can see yourself enjoying every day, and make sure you invest in the process. You’ll learn a lot about yourself as an individual and as an athlete.
Regarding athletics, my goals and ambitions remain unchanged. This is the part where I could write about all the cool things I want to accomplish, but I’ll let my actions do that.
See you soon,