Strong Finish

It was though, I put so much pressure on myself throughout the entire Olympics and then I had a brutal game like that… I was devastated. Disappointed. Sad.

That was the ending of yesterday’s post! So here comes the continuation…

After the game, we were told that we will already face off against Korea the next day at 12pm. Let me tell you, it was a very long rest of the day after the quarterfinal, but good thing I had very good distractions. I was happy that I was able to talk to my family and many other close people in my life. By the time I hit the bed in the evening, I had a clear mind and was ready for the next challenge against Korea.

As I mentioned in the previous blog, the quote: “The lower you fall, the higher you’ll fly”, was reversed for us, well this time it only happened to me. The higher you fly, the lower you fall… In the morning of the game, I was asked to go talk to the goalie coach, where I was told I wasn’t going to dress for the game. The reason? He wished I would have made more saves in the quarterfinal……

I was devastated. Disappointed. Sad. Again!

It was a very difficult situation for me, I had to grin and bear it, for the team.

I made a decision for myself though, to get a really good weights, core and a bit of conditioning workout in. It felt great to sweat all my emotions out! It was actually during that workout, I experienced one of my Olympic highlights (later post)…

I felt great after, so much positive energy and excited for the last game for 5th place. Before that was the case, we had another “off-day” with no ice. That was 2 days without touching the ice, that was quite special for me, as in a tournament 1 day is absolute max. I enjoyed a great off-day, got to discover a bit more of South Korea and recharge even more for the last game.

Finally, it was the day of the last game of these Olympics. I wanted it to be perfect! Even though we had a 4:40pm game, our schedule was packed before that. We had a 45-minute pre-game skate, two meetings, lunch and snack.

The pre-game skate felt terrible, after not being on the ice in two days, I felt rusty. I decided to continue all the same routines, did them more conscious though. Every movement I made was 200% conscious.

I decided to skip the cooldown after the pre-game ice and lunch in order to get more downtime and a 1-hour nap before the game. I had a tough time falling asleep for my nap, I was so excited for the game, I really wanted to get that 5th place!

Eventually I fell asleep and felt better after the nap. After the meeting, the team was headed to the dinning hall for a snack, I ate a light lunch instead, before heading to the rink. Once at the rink, all my conscious movements continued. I felt better and better with every movement. Additionally, I followed my pre-game routine for warm-up precisely and the closer the game came the better and better I felt.

Good things don’t last, right? Haha well for the on-ice warm-up, I was thinking of telling the coach not to start me. I felt terrible, could not catch a single puck. Something didn’t feel right. I tried to pull myself together, thinking it’s just the nerves. Once in the locker room again, I did my usual mental preparation and all of a sudden I felt ready like never before.

The game itself was probably not the best game I was part of. We played well, but I felt like Japan had the better chances, I was determined though. I wanted to win this game, for me it was 5th place or nothing. Good thing, we took the lead within the first 4 minutes of the game and never gave it up… 😊

Once the horn sounded after 60 minutes and we won the game 1-0, captured the 5th place, I was so relieved. So much weight fell off my shoulders with that last win. I started crying, it was such an emotional moment for me…

Although we couldn’t confirm our bronze medal from Sochi and the MVP I was awarded, we won 5 games out of 6 games played! How sick is that?

A pretty strong finish to these Olympic Games… 😊

Xo

Florence

 

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