The official training camp wrapped up on Sunday and I’m a little sad to see new friends returning home one by one over the last couple of days. A small group of us international skaters are still training here at Gerlev. Most of us are here until end of week and then it’s off to races or home. Yesterday I enjoyed my first rest day since arriving here and what did I do? A day trip to Copenhagen of course to explore the city. Luckily, walking rarely tires me out. My legs feel fresh once again when I woke up this morning.
So what is it like to by a fly on the wall at Gerlev Sports Academy? The best way I can describe is like my days living in university dormitory from the accommodation arrangement (common bathroom!) to the structured meal times. It’s not easy to keep school life running smoothly for all these students so punctuality is of great emphasis. I don’t recall the last time in my life when I take my meals on such regular schedule every single day. Breakfast runs from 7:30-7:55 so I either wake up earlier to take my shower or squeeze it in before we begin our morning training session. After breakfast, it’s time for morning assembly with a bit of singing and perhaps a talk from one of the teachers. It feels a bit like Sunday church service.
While the students are busy with classes, we head off to our morning training session. What we do depends on the program that coach Sooty plans out but the intensity varies according what else we have on the schedule in the evening.
There are plenty of facilities at the school specifically built for the program they offer. There’s an indoor swimming pool, dance studio, gymnastics room, crossfit training room, gymnasium for basket ball, outdoor soccer field, running track, and parkour area in addition to the dormitories and lounge/common area. We often come across groups of students gathering together for their study activities.