I hit the ice and for the first ten minutes I felt like garbage. It felt like no matter what I'd do, I'd just stop. I couldn't move well or turn at all. I tried to do a tight turn and then my skate just dug in and I fell. I had a feeling it was going to be a bad day on the ice. I went to another skater and asked if he wanted me to feed him some passes. That felt really good. I feel every pass I made was exactly where it needed to be. The last batch, I worked on a saucer pass.
From there I worked on just carrying the puck and making tight turns while carrying the puck. Keeping my knees bent, staying low, and keeping the stick away from my body so that I can actually handle the puck instead of just slap it around.
The goalie I work with was with was then ready to take some shots. I felt that the first 10 shots were very quick for me. I got into a good rhythm shooting, so much that he had to slow me down. I kept moving back, and from about 30 feet, I feel I'm fairly accurate. Forty feet is a different story. I felt that I did get better with accuracy as the session went on. The shots that were accurate weren't as hard, but accuracy is important to me.
My arms got tired, and then we split up, and I went back to working on my skating and stick handling. I fell down again later, but this time it was because there was a puck under my skate.
This was my last session on the ice before the season starts. This is the first season/session that I really have no nerves at all. I don't feel a big pressure on me to play well because I'm holding back the team, or concerns about just fitting in with the rest of the team. I suspect that the success of the Piranhas season last winter is the cause of it. It doesn't mean I can relax. The other teams are younger and getting better. I feel I'm already better than I was last year by how I worked this summer. I focused more on precision and intensity than endurance, and it shows. I've made changes to my skating, I've made changes to my positioning, and mindset. I feel more of a two way player than last year where I felt more like a hack.
When I got home, I got a haircut, a clean shave (I considered starting a beard last week) put in a new visor, and packed up the Piranha jerseys for tomorrow night. I caught a nap, and I'll get a great night of rest tonight. I know I'll play well tomorrow. I'm very excited.
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