Colorado springs

Surgery, New Programs, and Summer Plans

I am so excited to finally be back on the ice!  I am getting strong again after a long Spring of healing. After nationals, I had an MRI on my injured groin that didn’t show any serious problems.  So, I took two months off to try and heal my injury that I had been battling since last July. Unfortunately, after two months of staying off the ice, doing physical therapy, and being treated with Prolotherapy, my groin and abdomen still hurt. After extensive consultation with my doctor, we decided that sports hernia surgery was the only option. During my surgery in April, my doctor found micro tears and inflammation throughout my abdominals. He sutured a mesh pad into my abdomen to provide my muscles healing opportunity. My surgery was very successful but I was in a lot of pain for a few weeks. I wasn’t allowed or able to use my abs for any movement, so sitting up and laying down was a huge struggle. I spent two weeks on bed rest and then started physical therapy. It has now been six weeks since my surgery and I am happy to report I have my programs choreographed and I have begun jumpingJ My body is starting to feel strong again and most importantly, I am not in pain!

A few weeks ago, I traveled to Dallas, Texas and then Colorado Springs, Colorado to have my programs choreographed. Daniil Barantsev choreographed my short program to music called Torn by Nathan Lanier. I have been using Daniil as my choreographer since I was thirteen and it was great to work with him again. Visiting Daniil only four weeks after surgery was tough. Together we worked hard, to the point of exhaustion and very sore legs, but I was so thrilled to be back on the ice working toward next season. After a few tiring days with Daniil, I went straight to Colorado Springs to work with Tom Dickson. Tom choreographed my new long program to a compilation of songs from The Hunger Games. The program is fierce with triumph and joy also incorporated. I went from only skating 30 minutes a day after surgery to choreographing for 5 hours a day. The sore legs and lungs were well worth it because I love both of my programs. I look forward to continuing to develop the choreography and adding jumps.

Skate Detroit is my first competition planned for this season. I am already excited to debut my new programs but I have a lot of work to do until then. My aunt/coach, Kirsten Miller-Zisholz, has been working with me 1-2 hours a day in Michigan to help me get back to basics and gain my strength back. Once I am fully recovered, I plan to go back to California to train with Tammy Gambill. Unfortunately, I have not done triples since January because of my injury but my body is almost ready to get back to it. As an athlete, I want to train hard and jump triples now, but I realize that I have to build back slowly in order to prevent another injury. The wait is killing me but I am trying to enjoy the process and continue to learn along the way. Catch me at Skate Detroit strong again!

Thanks to all of you for your continued support! See you at the rink!!

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November Events

Is it just me or has November flown by? I had a very busy month which included the 2017 Midwestern Sectional Championships, Thanksgiving, a new show program, and new skates.

Early this month I competed at Midwestern Championships. They were held in Colorado Springs at the World Arena. I always love visiting Colorado because of the beautiful mountains and scenery. I had time to enjoy being outside because the weather was exceptionally nice for this time of year and most of my practices weren’t until the evening. Most mornings, I walked around a nearby pond to wake up my legs along with enjoy the mountain view and fresh air. I competed on Friday and Saturday and was happy with my performances. My secondary coach and aunt, Kirsten Miller-Zisholz, put me on the ice. I placed 2nd therefore qualifying for the 2017 US National Championships. With battling a groin pull throughout this year, I have had to be conscious of pain level and how much training I can do. Luckily my groin is getting better and I hope it will be back to 100% by the Championships.

Post Midwestern Championships I went home for Thanksgiving. I love returning to Michigan to see my family and friends. On Thanksgiving my family and I have TWO dinners, one with each side of my family. We go to my grandmother’s house in the early afternoon and my aunt’s house in the evening. By the end of the day we were stuffed.

While I was home for Thanksgiving I created a new show program. The music is “Hallelujah” by Pentatonix. This show program is for two Christmas shows I am thrilled to be performing in. On December 10th, I am performing in “Christmas Odyssey On Ice” in San Diego [link to show info]. On December 17th, I am performing in “Celebrate The Holidays On Ice” which will be in Santa Barbara [link to a show poster on Facebook] (Ice in Paradise rink in Goleta). If you are in the area, come out to see these exciting shows.

As if I was not busy enough, I just started to break in a new pair of skates. I wear Graf boots with Matrix blades, and my new skates are perfect. I love breaking in new skates if there are no blisters involved. I am back in training mode and excited for the upcoming months. Shows, Christmas in Michigan, then US Championships!

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My Season Thus Far

Hi everyone! I haven’t blogged in a long time and I want to update you with what I have been up to. It has been quite a season thus far. In June I made a big decision to move to California to work with Rafael Arutyunyan. I spent all summer working hard and settling in with new coaching and techniques. I have enjoyed living in the Los Angeles area except the daily traffic I have to sit in. When I wasn’t busy skating I visited a lot of beaches including Huntington, Santa Monica, and Newport. I even tried surfing which did not work out well.

In August, I attended my first Champs Camp in Colorado Springs! It was an amazing experience. During the camp we stayed at the Olympic Training Center and skated at the Broadmoor World Arena. I got to know some of Team USA’s skaters better and recieved great feedback throughout the camp.

In October and November, I attended three international competitions. I went to Espoo, Finland for the Finlandia Trophy in October. Finland was beautiful and the crowd during the event was outstanding. They clapped along to my short program multiple times and cheered very loud. It was a great feeling to have the crowd behind me.

I was honored to represent Team USA at two Grand Prixs this year. I went to Beijing, China and Moscow, Russia. I did not skate to my full potential at either competition but I did make small personal victories. To skate against the top skaters in the world was an amazing experience. I learned a lot throughout my international events this year especially with it being my first year on the Grand Prix circuit.

I was able to sightsee a small amount in China and Russia. In Beijing, we went to see the Great Wall of China. It was simply breathtaking and pictures don’t do it justice. We walked about a mile along the wall and climbed up over 600 stairs (which I counted). If you are ever in China, the Great Wall is a must see.

In Moscow we visited the Kremlin. It is a complex for the government of the Russian Federation and overlooks the Red Square, Saint Basil’s Cathedral, and Moskva River. I went with Polina Edmunds and some of her relatives from Moscow. They were able to tell us history about the Kremlin and show us around. Walking around in the historic area was incredible.

Currently, I am working hard to gear up for the US Championships. I am making progress everyday and getting excited. I am in Colorado Springs training and focusing on consistency. I have a countdown until Nationals going: only 16 days until the short program. Check back soon for another blog!

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