2011 Hawaii Training Trip Blog: Days 9 and 10
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  01/07/2011

Jan. 14

Final Photo Gallery

HONOLULU - California junior swimmer Emily Bibb wrote a blog during the Golden Bears' Jan. 5-14 training trip in Hawaii. They returned to the San Francisco Bay Area on Jan. 14.

Day 9, Jan. 13: Rain, Rain, Go Away
It was another rainy day on the island. Unlike the rain in Berkeley, it was a comfortable 70 degrees, making ocean swimming in the rain really fun. After breakfast, we drove to the pool for our last pool workout. Our strength coach, Nick, led a dry-land piece that transitioned well into the pool. Practice had several challenging pieces that allowed us to practice parts of our specific races. We said our farewells to the staff and to the pool that had become our home over the last nine days. That afternoon several Bears headed over to watch the men's volleyball tournament at the University of Hawaii while others enjoyed sushi for dinner. Unfortunately, later that night, we began to pack up, because tomorrow was our last day in paradise.

Day 10, Jan. 14: Back to Berkeley
Today was the last day of a trip that always seems to go by too fast! The storm had passed and the sun was out for our last ocean piece. We ended with dry land, relays and partner work. No one rushed back to coffee or the hotel today; we took our time to enjoy our last few hours on Waikiki.

Looking back, the trip flew by (as it always does.) Although we are all very sad to leave the island, there was a sense of excitement heading home to Berkeley. We had fun and worked extremely hard. We are a completely different team returning to campus than we were when we left. Being together in Hawaii allowed us grow closer as a team, explore different elements of our training, and adopt new habits that will help us be better athletes in and out of the pool. We are prepared and confident to face the 2011 season, excited for what awaits. The (tanned) Golden Bears returned home today to represent something bigger then ourselves - the University of California, Berkeley!

Jan. 13 Days 7 and 8 Photo Gallery

Day 7, Jan. 11: Team Dinner
The storm had passed, making it another beautiful day on the island. We started off our first practice piece with dry land in the sand and an ocean swim; we even did relays coming in and out of the ocean. The Blue Group had the rest of the day off, which consisted of paddle boarding, body surfing and beach hopping. The Gold Group had a successful pool workout. The best part about being in smaller groups is the feedback and specialized attention that both swimmers and coaches can benefit from. The afternoon was very low key.

That night, we had our annual team dinner at Shore Bird! This is always a highlight of our training trips because we get dressed up, take tons of pictures and enjoy a great food together. It was also special to celebrate Colleen's birthday as a team. We were off to bed early to rest up for tomorrow!

Day 8, Jan. 12: Hawaiian Winter
The storm was back! That didn't stop us from working hard, teaching each other and improving our swimming. We still had a great session in the ocean, using the weather to our advantage. We headed to the pool for a team workout. As it nears toward the end of our trip, there is so much apparent improvement across the board. We are putting new concepts to work in a high-intensity practice environment, and it is paying off! We left the pool with much satisfaction and accomplishment. It showered for most of the day, so many of us walked around Waikiki or explored the local town by car. Let's hope for sunshine and good surf tomorrow!

Daily Memories

K.T. Livingstone
"The toughest part about the last two days was how the weather has been so inconsistent and so unpredictable. It's been challenging to try to focus and manage the different practice environments."

Melissa Bates
"I have had a great time bonding with the team outside of the pool, doing different activities that I would not normally do like surfing and paddle boarding. So far my first training trip to Hawaii has been great."

Nicole Parmenter
"I felt most like a Golden Bear during our team dinner. While I was a recruit, I always saw all the pictures from the Hawaii dinner. It felt so cool to actually be a part of that!"

Days 5 and 6 Photo Gallery

Jan. 11

Day 5, Jan. 9: Teaching to Learn

6:15 a.m. - the Golden Bears were off to practice! Today we had more of a "traditional" practice. We worked out as a team and worked hard. We are very fortunate to have such a large facility that allows us tons of pool space to divide into more specialized training groups with different main sets. But we always start and end workout as a team. Toward the end of practice we seemed to have an audience of young swimmers and their parents; this is because we were hosting a clinic, Hawaii style.

We started off the clinic with a "meet and greet." We each introduced ourselves and told the swimmers and our parents our favorite thing about being a Cal swimmer. Without a doubt, swimming at Cal has changed each and every one of our lives. We divided the swimmers into four groups that rotated through stroke groups taught by the Bears. The best part of clinics is what we learn from them. Being surrounded by younger swimmers reminds us how we started and not to take things too seriously. It was also great working together as a team to teach younger kids techniques and drills that helped them quickly improve. After the clinic and a relay meet, the parents of the swimmers put together a great potluck lunch with tons of native Hawaiian food. It was delicious and we were able to connect with the swimmers on a personal level. This is always one of the best parts of our training trip.

That afternoon we headed back to Waikiki and spent the rest of the day at the beach! A little surfing and tanning made it the perfect afternoon!

Day 6, Jan. 10: TropiCal Storm

The morning began with an ocean swim. Just as promised, a storm was approaching, making it a little windy and colder than usual. The weather made our dry land and swim different from the previous days, which provided us with new experiences. The best part of the morning was when a seal joined us during our swim! Today it was the Blue Group's turn to head over to the pool for training while the Gold Group had the afternoon off to body surf and enjoy a beach day. Tomorrow it will switch and the Gold Group will be training at the pool. Later that day we cheered for the Pac-10 in the Oregon vs. Auburn bowl game and enjoyed dinner in Waikiki.

Daily Memories

Shelly Harper
"My favorite activity was the surfing, allowing us to transfer our athleticism from the pool into something we haven't done before. It was really cool to see my teammates improve so quickly."

Caitlin Leverenz
"Today my favorite part of practice was using pool toys like noodles during practice. Although unconventional, it created a hard but playful environment, which allowed us to work hard but still have fun!"

Erica Dagg

"Today a few of us went to Kailua. Although it was cloudy and drizzly, we decided to swim as if it were a practice. Before we knew it, we had a whole audience! It was really cool to be in our Cal caps and explore swimming outside a practice environment. "

Kelsey Hoff
"This morning it was really hard to get motivated because we have been working hard and I am really tired. But during the van ride to the pool, I looked around and saw my teammates. They are a constant reminder of my goals and the whole picture. Through them I represent something bigger then myself."

Days 3 and 4 Photo Gallery

Jan. 9

Day 3, Jan. 7: On Top of the World

We started off day two of training with another ocean swim! One of the best parts about doing an ocean swim is the walk to our "secret spot." It is not a long walk (about 10 minutes), but it is so peaceful watching the sunrise and walking Waikiki beach while only the locals are out and about. It was another productive session of dry land and ocean swimming. We emphasized racing techniques in the ocean and used dry land to sharpen transitions. Today we had another group practice following the ocean piece. Nick, our weight coach and former University of Hawaii alumnus, came back to his old stomping grounds today to get us in top dry-land shape. It was fun to have visitor on deck, Jerry, Teri's husband, cheering us on. It was a great practice, applying all we learned this morning in the ocean, into the pool (which happens to be colder then the ocean!)

After practice, we split into two groups. Half the team went back to Waikiki and had a low-key afternoon: napping on the beach, shopping and enjoying some famous Hawaiian shaved ice. NOTE: The one-piece tan is ALMOST GONE! The rest of us went with Teri and Nick and hiked Diamond Head! This is a must if you are ever on the island! It was beautiful. We worked up a sweat climbing all those stairs and reaching the top felt like we were on top of the world!

After a whole day of working out, you could imagine we were all pretty exhausted! Dinner and an early night's rest were on the agenda. Sweet dreams were guaranteed because tomorrow is our day off!

Day 4, Jan. 8: Beach Hopping

Day Off! Although we are on a training trip, working hard is just as important as getting rest both mentally and physically. It felt so good to sleep in and wake up without an alarm. Although Waikiki is great, we all wanted to get out and explore! No sitting around on our days off; we like to keep active. We have a lot of freedom, so today we were in smaller groups; but all of us had the intention of "beach hopping." Ironically, without plan, we all ended up at the same beach - Kailua! It's hard for us to be apart, even when we have the option. Although it was a little overcast, we still enjoyed body surfing, swimming and many beautiful views.

Most of us headed back to the hotel in the early afternoon to relax at Waikiki. We had another beautiful sunset on the island and enjoyed smaller group dinners. Swim team hotspots have included Duke's, Cheesecake Factory and sushi. We usually end up running into each other at Yogurtland, probably because it reminds us of our Berkeley home! Early to bed, early to rise for a hard day of training tomorrow!

{As a team, our thoughts and prayers go out the individuals and families affected in the Arizona tragedies}

Daily Memories

Ursula Dailey
"My favorite part of practice has been utilizing the open grass space at the pool. We do really innovative dry land, which has allowed me to explore many different avenues out of the water."

Samantha Shellem
"My favorite moment over the last few days was hiking up Diamond Head. It really took me out of my comfort zone and let me explore something I wouldn't necessarily see."

Mikkel-Ane Stipe
"An unexpected event today was during a walk when a few of us stumbled upon a hotel pool that was a part of the ocean! It became a cool place to sit and people watch."

Katherine Raatz
"My best meal so far hasn't necessarily been a meal, but there is no substitute for the Kona coffee from the island!"

Jan. 7, 2011

Day 1 Photo Gallery

Day 1, Jan. 5: Travel Day
Looking at our alarm clock settings one would assume that it was just another ordinary day. Waking up in the 5 o'clock hour is really no big deal; we do it almost every day. But, today was different; we weren't heading to the Spieker pool, we were heading to HAWAII!!!

Everything started off smoothly at the airport. I even heard the women at the kiosk say we were the easiest travelers she has ever dealt with. Once through security we had one thing and one thing only on our minds...FOOD! As swimmers, it is only natural to scope out the available food options and then look for our gate number. Our SFO terminal offered Subway, Starbucks, Jumpin' Java, the list goes on. With about 15 of us in line for Subway, we were satisfied when we finally got our coffees, bagels, and sandwiches; ready to board the flight to paradise.

It was a very empty flight. I actually feel bad for the people who bought their tickets first class. We got lucky and had a lot more room considering girls like Liv, at 6-3, got a whole exit row to herself! We did hit a minor glitch in the road after the flight attendant announced that we would be delayed an hour. Thankfully, the pilot knew his stuff and found the problem before takeoff, rather than in the air. Aside from that, everything was great! The captain gave the swimmers a shout out through the P.A. system, and the flight attendants were eager to learn about swimming and fascinated with the height of our team.

We made it to the hotel safe and sound! In no time we were enjoying dinner on the beach and working on our one-piece tan lines. Later that night all the smart shoppers from each room went to Costco to stock up on food for the trip!

Day 2, Jan. 6: No time wasted!
Let the games begin! First up - ocean swim! Unlike our other trips to the beach this season, it was nice NOT to bring a wetsuit! The water felt amazing. There is nothing better than swimming in warm water with sand and palm trees nearby. I think we all got great feedback from the water and really began to enjoy the "idea" of a training trip. We were playing in nature's pool for about an hour and 30 minutes before we enjoyed some Kona coffee on the way back to the hotel.

Because of our pool time, we only have about an hour between our ocean piece and pool workout (this is where that Costco food comes in handy.) At around 10 a.m., we all piled into the vans and were off to our next practice. The van rides have probably become one of my favorite parts a travel trips; there is NOTHING better than singing and dancing in the car with your teammates.

Not only is the pool we swim at beautiful, but we also get the whole place to ourselves! This allowed us to have dry-land stations and plenty of room in the pool to work on starts and turns. I think today's workout was one of the best practices I have done at Cal. I had fun, worked hard and learned a lot. I know many of my teammates felt the same way. What a good feeling.

Although our mornings are long, we get the whole afternoon to ourselves. Some of us napped, others went to the beach, while a few shopped. So far I have seen no sunburns and only smiles. It was a great first day to HAWAII 2011. I am sure it will only get better!

Daily Memories

Senior Hannah Wilson
"My favorite activity today was taking tons of pictures with my new underwater camera. I took 101 to be exact! It was a great bonding experience, and I now have these memories documented forever!"

Senior Katie Kastes
"My favorite part of workout was the dry-land pieces. I was able to incorporate the movements we do on land into our swimming strokes."

Freshman Deborah Roth
"Today I felt most like a Golden Bear when we were walking down Waikiki and hearing strangers yell, 'GO BEARS!'"