STANFORD, Calif. - The Stanford lightweight rowing team made its way from coast to coast on Sunday. Leading up to the IRA National Championships this weekend, Cardinal junior Alicia Kapjian-Pitt will be writing a daily blog about the team's activities. The first entry covers the end of workouts at Stanford and the flight across country.
Lights Out, Wheels Up
by Alicia Kapjian-Pitt
Sunday, May 25 means many things to the Stanford Lightweights. Today marks our first day of taper as we continue to prep for our championship racing. After Tuesday morning’s practice, Al (Acosta) told the team we only had three hard water workouts left on our schedule resulting in a collective cheer. I, myself was pleased with the announcement but I knew those workouts would test our mental and physical capabilities. By the time Saturday rolled around I was ready for the elusive taper before practice had even begun. That practice, our last Saturday morning of the season, left me toasted and eager. My legs had never been happier to hear the word, “taper” and luckily for me we had a cross-country flight to rest them. At approximately 5 feet 9 and ¾ inches, I consider myself to be on the tall end of the spectrum and tend to dread being cramped on a flight for five hours.This leads me to the second reason why May 25 is a significant day for the Stanford Lights. At 8 a.m. this morning, a relatively late wake-up for the team, we piled our luggage into the vans and shipped out to the airport. Bailey Yuro, a junior and New Jersey native, was especially pumped about going home and had been telling us about “Jersey,” for weeks. The excitement and angst was palpable as the journey we had all so been looking forward to was about to commence. Arguably, our journey to Jersey began many months ago, but today the physicality of the flight made it more real. But back to the leg-room situation for a moment; we began boarding the plane only to find our seats were sprinkled throughout Economy Plus. Texts, Snapchats, and GroupMe’s were passed amongst the team as no one could believe the amount of leg-room we were allotted.
We settled into our seats and one of the flight attendants came onto the loudspeaker to make a special announcement. It was someone on the flight’s 21st birthday. This leads me to the final reason for the importance of May 25th. Today is also the day I, along with my twin brother, was born. There is no better way I could imagine spending my birthday than with my teammates. While flying may not be everybody’s ideal way to pass their 21st – see leg-room discrepancies above – my teammates made it fun. They brought me cards, little trinkets and tipped off the flight attendants. We had a smooth flight, made a pit stop at a grocery store and finally wound up at our hotel. I promptly made my way to my bed ready to get some sleep as our training at Princeton begins tomorrow and the road to the championships continues.