The road has been long and many years in the making. Now, only 80 days away it's very close, too close almost.
In 80 days I will be competing at a regional gymnastics meet as Excel Gold. It's been 39 years since my last meet at Portland State University at the age of 20. I was a member of the Spokane Community College Gymnastics Team in 1978-79 (I only competed once or twice in college meets). That season was a comeback season. I came back into gymnastics at the age of 19, after 5 years off. Sort of like now except I am coming back after 39 years.
T H I R T Y - N I N E Y E A R S L A T E R. Let that sink in.
It may seem to you that my skills returned easily if you watch me work out. Well, maybe some did. But most of my skills I am perfecting for my big 4 decade comeback are skills I never did while I was young.
#1 - Handspring vault. Never did this in my young gymnastics career. Vault freaked me out. I was the gymnast who ran up to the board, balked and then never went over. I may have slammed into the vault a couple times. This is the type of thing that makes coaches mad.
Things have changed though. We used to measure the distance of the board from the vault from our own height. Not anymore. Also, because I am competing Excel I can use the mini tramp instead of the wooden spring board to jump to the vault. That's a great thing for 59 year old feet and legs. The mini tramp is only 2 feet away from the vault now.
Back in the day we vaulted over a pommel horse, the skinny, slippery leather horse that the boys use for their vaulting only they turn it the long way. Now we use a vaulting table. It has a ton of real estate, which is great for me, although my hands never move far from the same spot each time.
Actually at this point vaulting is really fun and it feels like flying!!! I'll post a video of my always improving handspring soon.
Please join me and follow my daily blog as I travel down the road to Vegas over the next three months.