Going into my senior year I thought that it would be a good idea to say farewell from where I left off. It has been three years since my last SAISA Track & Field tournament which took place in Colombo during my 9th grade year. I remember it being a great first experience of a winning team in SAISA and as my first Track and Field tournament. When I heard that the Track & Field dates changed to the 2nd quarter instead of the of the 3rd I knew that it was the perfect time to try out and start training without the worries of being too close to the exams. At the beginning, it felt weird coming back to a sport that I haven’t been intentionally training for in a while. Hard and painful training sessions is something I definitely remember about track nevertheless, coming to training on that first day was really nice as I got to see so many new and familiar faces again. Training sessions would be on Monday and Wednesday after school with a Saturday session in the morning. This regime would continue for around 2 months before the competition.
My first training session back was nostalgic in a way. Remembering the ways that we use to warm up and run in groups brought back memories of my first time I joined track. Before I knew it I was warming up with the long distance group ready to be paired up and start running. I felt good at the beginning, struggled a bit but I was able to push through the first couple of sessions with a good workout. As soon as we finished a session on a Saturday where we did hill runs I started to feel a discomfort and pain on my left hip. This pain was normal for me as I did have an injury before on the same area however, this time it was slightly different as it didn’t effect the same muscles as before. Thinking that it would go away I avoided seeing a physician. Only later on once it had started to hurt to the point where I couldn’t run properly I went to one. I really tried pushing through training sessions but it kept getting worse after each session. This eventually had a great effect to my times when I raced. Sadly it came to a point where I knew that I might not be able to travel with the team for the tournament. It was hard at the beginning to accept an injury but sometimes you just need to listen to your body and wait for it to heal. It was definitely not the way I wanted to end my track experience yet, I still enjoyed and had a great time spent with the team. Once the team was decided, I still came to a couple of session afterwards during the week to show support.
After a couple of weeks later I decided to come early one Saturday morning with Nehe to play basketball before the team started training. I soon started coming to each Saturday session to play with some guys before the team came. It was 2 weeks before the competition that one of the coaches (Coach KT) asked if I could join their practice game. This would be the start of me coming to the rest of their training session during the week and weekend before the tournament. I never played basketball competitively before or went to training sessions but I always enjoyed playing the game with my friends after school or during break and lunch times. It was really interesting to learn and understand a new game I wasn’t so familiar with. Each session was a practice game in order to prepare for the tournament. At this point my hip wasn’t in pain anymore and so It was really enjoyable that I was able to make plays and run without discomfort. It was funny when my friend Seth got mad at me for not trying out for the basketball team. It was eye-opening that I was able to find something new that I liked and was decent at even after training with a track team for the most part. However, I wouldn’t have traded the experience that track has given me and the people I have met. It was actually really nice to have connected and grow in two sports instead of one.
Overall, my sport experience in my senior year was really weird and unexpected. It didn’t go as planned but I got a lot out of it. I will dearly miss playing on the court and running on the grass field with my friends and learning a lot from the coaches.