US Rowing Camp Diary with Meg George: June 27
June 27, 2009
After joining the Texas Rowing program as a walk-on in 2006, senior Meg George has developed into a top rower after spending one year on the novice team and rowing the past two seasons with the Horns’ varsity team. This summer George is training with the US Rowing U23 Women’s National Team in Oak Ridge, Tenn.
The first week of U23 camp was more challenging and eye-opening than anything I've ever done at Texas. Very quickly, I understood that there is another level of competition, fitness and focus that is necessary to have success here in Oak Ridge, Tenn. Fortunately, the first week was the hardest, and the training we've done has become easier to handle as we all have adapted to the heat and intense training schedule. We had a 6K the second Monday that gave me even more perspective: the college teams the other women here row for are fast for a reason. The 6K times were really impressive and I can’t explain how cool it was to watch someone pull a 6K at my 2K split. At that point, I tried not to lose confidence, but also realized how I could use my time here as a learning experience.
I spent a lot of time in sculling boats: quads, doubles and even a single one day. I had sculled less than five times before being put in a lineup and expected to quickly learn how to not only scull, but to do so without flailing around and ruining the set of the boat. I am glad to say that I adapted more quickly than I expected, and spent most of my time the second week in a double with a girl my height from Purdue named Lindsay Welch.
This past week, I have been in a pair racing in time trials. I've only ever seat raced, so racing against the clock posed a new challenge. I came out of my first couple of trials with a bit more confidence and momentum under my belt. The coaches have continued to encourage me and are giving me an opportunity to show them what I can do, and that is really all I can ask for. We did some time trials again this morning, racing 1500-meters three times in a row.
We are now halfway through the selection process. Though it’s still unclear exactly which boats they are selecting, everyone is working really hard toward the top. Whatever lineups result from our time in Tennessee, I can tell you that the USA team at U23 Worlds will be fast, fit and comfortable in 95 degree weather to boot. The team leaves for Princeton, N.J. next weekend.
I’ll let you know what happens as soon as I know.