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Phoebe's Story: Week Seven

Joel and Phoebe Joel Selwood speaks to AFLW player Phoebe McWilliams about the upcoming 2019 Family Festival at GMHBA Stadium on Sat 12th Jan, 3pm - 5pm

As an AFLW player, the Christmas “break” is not really a break.

It is in a sense that you get to spend time away from the club and with your loved ones.

However during the 15 days away from your teammates you are hardly sitting around idle.

Every second day you are completing some form of exercise - running, gym and footy skills.

Before our break Mon Kelly (strength and conditioning) and Dom Condo (dietician and player development) sat us down to talk to us through our holiday program. Although they wanted us to enjoy ourselves, it was clear we weren’t to go overboard.

The Christmas break is about balance. It’s about enjoying your time off but at the same time in the back of your mind you’re always thinking that round one is just over a month away. You can enjoy the food and festivities but the next day you do your training.

Cats women’s players spent their break training in a whole host of places. Whilst the majority of us spent a fair bit of time training out at Deakin and at the club, there were others who had to improvise.

I spent Christmas morning running around Healesville Oval, Georgie Rankin was training at home on the Gold Coast, Flynny (Elise Coventry) was in Wangaratta, Becky Webster was in Benalla. There were Cats running laps everywhere.

Our holiday program meant that our return to training last weekend wasn’t a shock to the system. The girls were refreshed, but also fit, and ready to get stuck into it. On a number of occasions during training it was reiterated that we had just four weeks until our first game against Collingwood. Things are starting to get real.

Mon so kindly “eased” us back into things at our Saturday session, but her kindness quickly dissipated during the week.

Tuesday we completed our second shuttle run. The 1.2km test wasn’t any easier the second time around. Mon was happy with us as the majority of players completed the course with similar or better times.

Wednesday night’s gym session was one I’m sure Mel Hickey would have liked. It was all about uppers. Oh and don’t forget the killer core circuit at the end. Pretty sure I did a thousand sit-ups in ten minutes. I’d better have a six-pack soon, Mon!

We’re starting to include a lot more match simulation at training as we prepare for games. We have a practice match next weekend, which will be a good indication of where we are at and what things we need to work on.

It’s clear the holiday is over, but the New Year means we are closer to round one. The countdown is well and truly on.

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs