So yesterday I told you a little bit about how I started rowing and what I loved about it. I also mentioned that I went to college in the hopes of rowing for the next four years at a D1 university. Well, when I went to those practices and only heard people complaining about being there...it got me thinking....
Do I really want to wake up early and spend my time with people who don't want to be here?
No...I don't. First off, I am not a morning person. 5 AM is like the worst time for me to have to tolerate people complaining. Second, this is a team sport and if my teammates hate it...why am I here?
Well...I lasted one year...and then...
I QUIT! I felt like I didn’t belong and like I was a failure.
The thing is…I’m not a quitter, so this was a big deal for me. I had to weigh my options. I had a group of people that didn't like rowing, but suffered through it anyways. I had to wake up at absurd hours and go to class soaking wet because I couldn't get later classes...but I could deal with that. However, I did find another group of people that loved what they were doing....
My freshman year of college there was an EMT that lived across the hall from me. From the moment I saw him in his uniform, I thought, "I want to be him". So while I was still rowing, I worked my booty off to get into the schools EMT program...and I got it!
So I replaced my love of rowing with people who had a common goal, wanted to do something, and loved it. I found my group of people in the volunteer EMT program. I think what I was missing in rowing were people who enjoyed what they were doing. I wanted to be around people who pushed themselves to be better and found the good in themselves and others, not people who just complained all day. So...I was an EMT for the next three years in college and continued after school.
I ended up having a third ankle surgery while I was in school and that is when I had to go to physical therapy and ended up deciding that it is what I wanted to do.
Since my ankle wasn't great with running, and my booty wasn't a fan of biking, I actually found myself on the indoor rowing machine a lot and even though this device was the devil for people who row on the water, I found it kind of peaceful.
So...I eventually got into Physical Therapy school, learned a whole lot about how the body moves, and found a new love of rowing alone on the rowing machine.
Well, there is a lot more to that story and how I want to make it my mission to take my rekindled love of rowing and my desire to help people do what they love, and help rowers row without aches and pains, but...
I think the more interesting story that really plays into how much I love rowing and is my four year dream is...
In 2022 I want to row SOLO across the ATLANTIC OCEAN. You read that right. I want to row all alone, on a boat, 3000+ miles across the Atlantic Ocean in a 21-ish foot boat with sharks, dolphins, storms, 21+ foot waves, etc….and guess what…
I hate the ocean…It’s big. It’s scary. I could die…
I'll tell you all about it tomorrow.
Amanda Painter is the Rowing Doc. She is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and is here to help people stay active and rowing without aches and pains so they can keep doing what they love!