Crew’s a bitch. Pretty much the sport in a nutshell. It’s not fun. Honestly ask anyone who rows competitively. No one does the damn sport because it’s fun and certainly not because they enjoy it. It’s extremely painful physically and mentally and fucks with your life. You tirelessly practice 6-7 days a week with no rest doing painful pieces that make you feel as if you are going to both throw up and pass out at the same time and your legs are burning so badly you can’t feel then and you’re back feels like it is going to snap in two and you feel like your arms are going to fall off while some crazy person yells at you that you should be doing better and corrects your every move because you will very rarely have the perfect technique. Often doing this in the cold, rain, snow, sleet or heat on a dirty river where you swear you’ve seen more then one dead body. And then every sunday you wake up at 4 in the morning to get to some unfamiliar place with river to nervously wait all day for the most painful 6 minutes of your life where you often have a very slim chance of winning. Along with that you lose every ounce of free time you thought you would have because of the constant practice and then not being able to do anything after practice because you’re just too tired, or you have to go to bed early because you have a race the next day.
So why would anyone in their right mind do this to themself? Believe me i’ve been asking myself the same thing for the past 4 years. But then i think about how wonderful it can be. Winning, one of the only perks, is the most amazing thing in the world. Now i know that sounds stuck up but do you know how wonderful it feels when you have been working your ass off for weeks and weeks pushing through the pain and working through it all. Giving it all up and then it all comes down to that 6 minute race. And you can’t control how any of the other teams are doing, there’s no defense like in other sports the only thing you can control in the race is the performance of yourself and sometimes the people in your boat. And passing the finish line first makes all of that worth it. It’s worth all the pain for that one moment.
Or maybe for the friends you make along the way. Maybe it’s just me but once you spend every waking moment of your life with someone you begin to kind of get a special bond with them. They’re the ones there for you when you need them most. They make you happy when everything goes bad. Your team is your family. I wouldn’t give that up for the world.
So yeah. Maybe crew is a bitch, but i really do love it. And no matter how much pain it causes or how hard it gets, in the end it will always be worth it.