Sunday, May 28, 2006

A Mixed Bag-A rant

The last couple of days have been rather interesting for me. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to write about it at first, but now I feel like I need to. Friday I found out that the coach that I have now is going to be leaving in September. He is going to teachers’ college. I was so proud of and happy for him, but that leaves me high and dry 3 months before our World Championships. Anew coach is supposed to take his place, but we don’t know who that is going to be and if they have the creativity to coach a blind swimmer. It’s not completely different than teaching a sighted athlete, but it requires a lot of hands on and description. Also, whenever any athlete gets a new coach, the coach has to test them to see where they are in their training and to understand their skills and abilities as well as sites of improvements. This is slightly troubling when I am supposed t be at my peak of training. It could impact my performance at the World Championships. I emailed the head coach of Swim Canada and he gave me a few suggestions as how to deal with this situation. He said I should talk to the head coach of our club and discuss who will be coaching in September and whether or not that person will be delegated as my coach. He then suggested, that if this does not work out, that I will have to move. That is creates a whole new set of problems in itself and I think it will take away from training, which was the point of moving in the first place. I’d have to find somewhere to live, learn how to get around-which worries me the most-find a coach, a tapper and a sublet for my room here in Waterloo. I’m scared! Not to mention, I have to been able to get to the pool in the last 2 weeks because of construction. The entire place outside of the Athletic Complex is torn up and Jetta sees it all as obstacles. I have tried to get there, but somehow it just has never worked. I have even phoned the CNIB-Canadian National Institute for the Blind, they help with things such as cooking lessons and Orientation and Mobility lessons-they told me that they would not have an open lesson spot until the beginning of June. I do not appreciate how the CNIB is run and try to avoid them at all costs. My coach here told the head coach, who in turn phoned and emailed me about the situation. I can understand both of them being angry and frustrated, but they have to remember I’m annoyed as well. I want to be there. It’s not like I’m not showing up because I’m lazy an don’t feel like it. So, anyway, I’m in big trouble with the head coach now. *snort*
I’ve also been dealing with a low sugar problem for a long time. In fact, I can’t really remember not having it. It’s like I have to eat enough to satisfy a 6 foot 5 man who weighs 300 pounds. It’s ridiculous. I have asked people what they may think it is and they just keep telling me to eat more. They say I don’t’ consume enough calories, so I increased my eating. The issue has not subsided. Ashley and I were talking the other day and she suggested that I get a hold of the team’s scientist. He tests for lactic acid at competitions and helps athletes to manage their bodies properly. I emailed him yesterday and this is what he wrote back.

Jess (and Jetta)

It really sounds like you are hypoglycaemic (low blood sugar). That would cause
the dizziness, shaking, disorientation, etc. My first inclination would be to
suggest that you try and eat 6-8 small meals rather than 3 or 4 large ones.
Also, try to get some extra protein & fat in the diet to keep the blood sugar up
(because they take longer to digest), as well as keep you feeling full. Cheese
is great for this, as are nuts & legumes.

The other alternative, which is not that bad, is to go see your physician and
ask them for an oral glucose tolerance test. This is a good indicator to tell
you if you are diabetic (does your pee smell sweet? Do you have to go often?
These are signs of diabetes). Don't freak out. It is better to go get checked
and then get the Yes or No rather than try a bunch of things before going and
getting it checked out.

I do agree that a blind athlete will need a higher caloric intake than a
non-blind athlete. The concentration does consume a great deal of calories, and
mainly glucose.

Let me know what you think - you can try the smaller meals with more protein &
fat for a week or two and see how that works, or you can go get the blood test
done or both. Just let me know so that we can work through this together.

I am going in to san Antonio a bit early, so we can sit down and talk about
things a bit more, but we need to get this figured out quick so that you can
train properly (and live a semi-normal life as an athlete).

So, now I have to figure out what I am going to do with this. I think I am going to try the meal thingy-even though I have been a different version of it-and then get the blood tests afterward. I had so many different emotions after I read this. I actually cried. Jetta was out on the living room couch and came into my room and started doing her silly snorting tail wag thing. I gave her a hug and it felt a bit better. I think it was because someone finally believed me and had a helpful suggestion. It was also scary.
The final thing I am going to bitch about today is one of my very best friends. She is leaving in Ottawa with a complete moron. She phoned me last night and it was the first time we’ve spoken in a long time. We kind of had a weird falling out at Christmas and things just haven’t been the same since. But last night, we talked for 3 hours and we filled each other in. I’m trying to convince her to leave him and come live here for the summer. He treats her like crap and controls every move she makes. It’s not healthy! I also missed her birthday in April-completely by accident!-and I feel like a complete idiot. I’ve never missed her birthday before. In talking to her I also realized that I missed another friend’s birthday at the beginning of May. Yikes! What is happening to me? Anyway, I think she should move here. She could sublet from Tenie and it would be super cheap. She could get away and clear her head and there are plenty of jobs available because all of the university students went home for the summer. I’ve even threatened to phone her parents and tell them to move her out. Her dad has already said he’d move her out at any time and to wherever she wants to go. So, if you’re reading this, what are you waiting for?!
I think that is all for now. I needed to vent.

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