Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Update - still breathing...

... just not holding my breath very much these days. So what am I doing instead?

After finishing my bacherlor degree in Aarhus in September 2010, I finally moved in with Martin in Berlin. I started the Master program in Molecular Medicine at the Charite University Medicine in October and have been pretty busy ever since. The studies take up more time now, as I have (very interesting) lab placements along with the lectures. Freediving is still a big part of me, and will always be, but I have decided to take a break from competitions and intensive training for a while.

I have had a LOT of wonderful competitions over the last five years, and I am very grateful that I had the oppertunity to travel and train freediving the way I did. This is mostly thanks to the great support I recieved from Nordea, which was sponsoring me all the way back in 2006 when I went to my first world championship!

Instead of the pool, I'm spending some time in the park and the woods running or hicking, and plan to stay in shape even without the monofin. The ocean is not completely safe however, as that longing for the deep, blue depth is still there...

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Freediving as a musical installation - Berlin, Saturday 25th September

I will hold my breath as a part of a musical installation exploring the various physiological responsens which take place during apnea. The piece is called "The Body is a Vessel" and is created by the swiss composer Robin Meier. It will take place on Saturday 25th September 7pm at the kleine Wasserspeicher, Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin. The installation is a part of the SuperCollider Symposium 2010. More details to come :)

Friday, 9 July 2010

Ear infections, hopes and expectations

Since travelling to Okinawa, I had a small ear infection in my right ear. It hadn't given me any problems during the training, but after sitting around waiting for the CWT competition to happen, it decided to get worse to the point where it completely blocked me from leaving the surface. I kept trying to make it come around with ear drops etc, but I was unable to start in the competition. This left me in a sad state for the rest of the championships, as I had really wanted to do my 60m dive.

Static training (where I did 6'08!) had left me with slightly too big expectations, and I came up too early at 4'49 in yesterday's static competition. The guys did great though, with Bjarte setting a new national record for Norway with 6'31. Well done!

Today I played around in the nice 50m outside pool, testing some new monofins and getting my body going. I feel more positive again and hope to come up with a smile from my dynamic dive tomorrow. Happy thoughts, happy thoughts...

Saturday, 3 July 2010

White cards and delays

Bjarte made his dive today, getting a white card for the 75m and securing the first points for Norway. Well done! Apparently, the current was none excisting today, but instead the waves had picked up pretty good. The weather forecast has predicted strong wind tomorrow aswell, so the constant weight dives have been postponed. Hopefully we will get to dive on Monday 5th instead.

Instead of going diving, many of the athletes are taking an excursion to the aquarium (me included) to watch the whale sharks and many other creatures there.

While waiting for the deep dives, I've been doing statics to get some training. It seems to be going very well and my body is doing what it's supposed to! I did an easy 5'45 in the morning, and hope this will do some good for the static competition later.

Friday, 2 July 2010

Constant weight announcements

The official training is over and the announcements for constant weigth is out. Half of the athletes will compete tomorrow, on Saturday, and the rest on Sunday. The Norwegian team starts as follows:

3/7 - Bjarte Nygard, AP (announced performance): 75m, OT (official top): 11.32
4/7 - Steinar Schjager, AP: 70m, OT: 12:09
4/7 - Elisabeth Kristoffersen, AP: 60m, OT: 12:37

The weather was a little lighter today out on the boat, but the current is strong and the sea is a bit choppy. Scenery was beautiful though.

I am very happy to have a rest day before my deep dive, as I was a little sea sick and tired today at the training. But I had a nice 52 m dive yesterday, so I feel confident going for 60 for the competition.

The 2010 World Championship has started!

On Wednesday 30th June, all athletes, coaches and staff was ready to kick off the 2010 AIDA Team World Championship. At the opening ceremony, the teams were represented and welcomed to the first World Championship taking place in Asia (!). Although we are fewer teams than the last years, the competition will be fierce among top teams like Japan, Denmark and France. Our Norwegian team also looks strong and we are ready to give the others a real fight.

We are all staying at the Tokyo Dai-ichi Hotel in Okinawa, which (just to mention) has a 5 m deep pool where we freedivers are playing around. I have started my training in the pool with some statics, and yesterday on the 1st of July we also did our first official CWT training. The weather was a little rough, but everybody on the german and norwegian team made their dives :)

Today we are off for some more deep training, and the first competition day is tomorrow where half of the athletes are competing in CWT. More updates and announcements will follow...

Monday, 14 June 2010

Depth training for the World Championship

For us freedivers, training in the pool is all very well, but there is nothing which can compare with the ocean. I hadn't been deep diving since Dahab in April 2009, which made me feel like a fish on land. But, three weeks ago, I finally got to satisfy my longing for deep waters. Anna von Boetticher had invited a small bunch of freedivers for depth training in Nice, freediving heaven. And boy did we have a great time!

Anna and I got straight to business after arriving Thursday 20th May in the afternoon. We took the dingy out for a session just outside Nice harbour, which was our base for the first few days. I felt at home in the water almost right away, warming up with some frc's and dipping down to 42m.

The next morning Liv Phillip arrived, and we girls went training again: 45 and 46m for me :) Equalizing was fine, my legs were fine and I didn't even feel any tightness in the chest. This was very promissing! In the afternoon, Martin and Andy (friend of Anna) arrived, and we measured our training rope properly. 100m should be good for this time...

Saturday morning started with stretching, followed by a very nice dive session. My warm-up hang was getting longer, and I felt ready for a deeper dive. With Martin safetying, I went down to 50m and came up with a big smile. Afterwards, we had breakfast, lifted the anchor and sailed away. The weather was only too good, blue sky and sunshine. Not really enough wind, but I guess you can't have it all.

In the afternoon I tried variable weight for the first time, hanging on to the bottom weight down to 54m and swimming up. It felt SO easy! More like a rollercoaster ride, as I was getting pretty fast, both down and up again. It was so much fun!

Sunday 23.May was my birthday, and it turned out to be the best one I've ever had: Morning dive to 60m, loving every bit of it. This is why I freedive... Blueberry pancakes for breakfast followed by some sunbathing. Afternoon variable weight to 60m having fun! Then birthday cake, champagne, presents and wonderful company. Thank you guys!

On Monday I was too tired to do a proper dive and I turned early at 52m (going for 64m). As a final treat, I got to climb the mast and enjoy a wonderful view. In the afternoon, Martin and I had to say goodbye and got dropped off in Cannes.

Hopefully I will manage to stay in shape up to Okinawa and I'm looking forward to going down into the deep sea soon.