‘Ch ch ch ch changes’: Abi Smith blog

 

‘Turn and face the strange’.

Well, Team dsm-firmenich PostNL anyway. They’re not strange just for clarity. I might be though, which is perhaps slightly contradictory – I’ll move on…

After two and-a-bit years with EF Education – Tibco-SVB, it was time to test the waters elsewhere and try something new. Very happy to say I’ve landed on my feet a bit with Team dsm-firmenich PostNL. There are lots of big differences but I’m getting into my rhythm and really enjoying my time here. Everyone has been so welcoming, already at our team camps in October and December last year I felt like part of the ‘family’ straight away.

It’s been a bit of a whirlwind start to 2024 – 13 race days already this year – but I like being thrown in at the deep end a bit, I swim quite well. Just before Christmas I was told that I was to be called up to Australia, as unfortunately teammate Megan had a bad training accident, so that started my season pretty early, but with great success for our team! Then in February came Valenciana, the beginning of the Classics season (with plenty of cobbled chaos), and a ‘mini-move’ over to the Netherlands for the next few months of racing. Busy but exciting.

 

Photo: Cor Vos/Team dsm-firmenich PostNL

 

For me the best thing with the team is the organisation and clarity. As an absolute stress-head this makes my life a lot easier – all of my ducks are in a row, standing to attention and quacking in sync. Certainly as stress can influence racing and training so much, it’s so important that everything is as easy as possible so that, in simple terms, I can do my job as well as I possibly can.

 

Photo: Cor Vos/Team dsm-firmenich PostNL

 

As with any change there are a lot of new things to get used to – new equipment, coaches, training plans, race plans, schedules, etc etc. It’s a lot of information to take in all at once at first – some ducks are running around bumping into each other, a couple frantically scribbling notes, some somersaulting into the pool… but after some time for it to all bed in, everything sorts itself out and becomes clear. I feel like I’ve settled well into the way of working and all is so far so good.

From the races I’ve done I’m already learning a lot, and there is plenty for me to work on which will take time, energy and motivation to achieve. But I trust the process and believe I can get to where I want to go.

‘Time may change me, but I can’t trace time’ ; let’s live in the now and see what the season brings!

Until next time,

Abi

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