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It is very early on Sunday morning, and I am sitting in the breakfast area in the lobby of a hotel while two girlfriends are asleep in the room. It has been a marathon weekend of holiday shopping!

Marathon. Hmmm. Interesting word. Marathon is the word I would use to describe the life of an elite figure skater. The six-event Grand Prix series followed by this week’s Grand Prix Final must be a bit of a grind. I am not talking about the competing because that is what these athletes live for.

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For the best of the best of the season, it will have meant two Grand Prix competitions and then a trip to Nagoya, Japan for the Grand Prix Final. The event will feature the top 6 skaters from each discipline who knew from the end of last week that they would be going. The alternates had to stay in top training form in case someone dropped out. This was the case for Jason Brown (from last week’s podcast) who found out on Friday that he is headed to Japan. Whew. I am tired just thinking about it.

I have a little bit of insight on what this must be like from my far-flung announcing gigs. I have arrived in some far-off place on one day and then been working all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed the very next day. The difference between me and the skaters is a lot. I only have to get the microphone to the general area of my lips and maybe (if I don’t have ‘people’) unscrew a water bottle. Nowhere do I have to actually move; especially hurling myself into the air to whirl around. There is also no music for me to pay attention to and remember the choreography. It’s a lot and I am deeply impressed.

I am always in awe of the way these skaters can travel the world and be at their peak, while I am exhausted from a trip around Target followed by our subsequent pilgrimage to the Olive Garden!

Look for some fund stuff from David Pelletier and Carol Lane this week. We’ll be doing something different with our Facebook Live this week, so keep an eye out for that on my Facebook Page. Follow me @skatingpj on Twitter and Instagram for the latest figure skating news!

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