Inside the Locker Room: By Gretchen O'Henley

Jan. 5, 2009

STANFORD, Calif. - Hey SWG fans!

After a nice week off to spend time with our families and friends at home, SWG returned to campus the Saturday after Christmas well-rested and ready to go. We only had three practices before our first competition in Cancun, but everyone came back in great shape and dominated our conditioning and assignments. We also had our annual holiday party at Kristen's house where we exchanged homemade gifts and poems with each other. It was fun to see what everyone made for their Secret Santa because there were some pretty creative gifts. We really went above and beyond with the poems, including songs from Kelly, Mike, and Peach! This year we also pooled our money and donated it to the Nothing But Nets campaign, which sends anti-malaria nets to Africa. It reminded us of how lucky we are here at Stanford to have what we need and to have each other.

For New Year's Eve we celebrated for East Coast time because on New Year's Day we left very early in the morning for our first competition! It was definitely worth it though because we were on our way to Cancun! When we got to our hotel, which was also where the meet was being held, we had a short workout to get a feel for the equipment and then had dinner with Oregon State. The rest of the night we just chilled in our rooms, enjoying the ocean views and warmth in the middle of winter.

Friday was competition time! It was so exciting to feel the driving energy from the whole team! It was our first chance to show off all the work we had done in the preseason, and we definitely brought it! There were some standout individual routines, like Dani's floor routine and Carly's bar routine, but even more impressive was the group effort we put into each event, showing that we always have each other's backs. Beam was especially awesome. We ended up needing the back five girls to hit and they rocked their routines! It really showed us and everyone else just how tough we can be as a team. Overall, the meet was a great way to start off the season. We were thrilled with the win but also know what we have to work on and for sure we will just keep improving throughout the season. Get ready for it!

On Saturday, we split up as some girls spent the day with their parents, some chilled at the hotel on the beach, and others went on adventures snorkeling, windsurfing, and salsa dancing. It was a fun and relaxing last day before we had to return to Stanford and move back into our own rooms. Classes start tomorrow and it will be nice to get back into the school routine.

It has been great to kick off the season and it's going to be an awesome year! Thanks for checking in and GO CARD!


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