With the cancellation of the WNFC 2020 season, our players have had to adjust not only to missing an entire season of football, but also to practicing safe distancing due to a global pandemic. We want to hear about it.
Inspired by The Players’ Tribune, The WNFC is excited to introduce a new blog series, "The Iso Journal", where we catch up with our superstars to find out how they've spent their time in isolation, what they are doing to prepare for the 2021 pre-season, and how they are remaining #WNFCproud off the field.
The WNFC puts the safety of players at the forefront of everything. Without healthy and inspired players, we have no league. When I found out the 2020 season was cancelled, I was bummed but not surprised. After my initial sadness wore off, I optimistically realized this was a chance for me to further develop my skills. I've played a lot of sports but never tackle football. I'm taking this down time as a way to increase my mental knowledge of the game.
Quarantine has had ups and downs. Some days are better than others. Overall, I have learned to slow down. I'm an Enneagram 3 and an extremely social person. It's really hard for me to say no when I’m invited to things. While this makes me a great friend, it also creates a space where I neglect to give myself the care I need. I have developed hobbies and habits that are not contingent on my friends or partner. As things start opening back up, I'm excited to maintain this sense of stability and independence I've created.
Biking has become my way to clear my head and explore new areas of Denver. With football season cancelled and team workouts coming to an end, I knew I needed a physical activity to help increase endorphins. I hate running. At the start of the pandemic, I tried to go for a run around the park. I hate running so much that I got about one mile in and kept running all the way to Walmart to buy a bike. Little did I know, this cheap bike would turn into a new hobby that I absolutely love! I've now upgraded to a nice road bike. I ride every day, often twice, usually early in the morning before work or in the evening when the sun starts to go down.
Journaling has also been great for my mental health. I used to write a lot in high school and putting paper to pen again has been so therapeutic. The ability to download and reflect first thing in the morning or after a long day is truly underrated.
The positive I've taken from these past months is that it's okay to feel. That sounds cheesy but recent events have really surfaced a lot of up and down emotions. Without the distractions of everyday life, it's forced me to sit down and absorb those feelings. Previously, I would've just kept myself busy with work, football, and going out with friends. Two of those three things have been stripped from my life.
I’ve been left with more alone time with my thoughts. This has been a huge blessing. In combination with my journaling, I've become more in tune with my emotions. I allow myself to feel whatever comes my way. I digest and reflect on it, then let it go. It's been nice.
With the closing of bars and restaurants, I've been forced to cook more. My eating has gotten ten times better. I'm a social person so eating at restaurants was a very common thing for me before lockdown. I only purchase healthy items, which causes me to cook healthy meals. I'm excited to keep this energy more permanently. I've noticed a huge difference in both my performance and mood.
Shifting to a remote lifestyle was pretty seamless. Thankfully, my work has not changed much. I handle implementation for a software company, so I already worked from home a few days a week.
Our company prioritizes mental health and employee well being. Days off are encouraged. Between the pandemic and yet ANOTHER instance of police brutality, life has been heavy. Our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Team always creates safe spaces for these important conversations through Zoom chats and online resources. Overall, work has been a blessing, both economically and mentally. I'm extremely grateful.
I'm lucky enough to be isolated with my roommate and best friend. We went to high school together and she just recently moved out to Colorado. We're basically two peas in a pod.
Being secluded to one city has been tough. Not getting to travel has been quite the challenge. I love to visit friends and family. I also have the ability to work almost anywhere with WiFi, so it's not uncommon for me to dip out of town on a Thursday for a long weekend. I've already started crafting a list of all the plane tickets I'm buying when this thing ends!
I miss sports so much. I help coach a JV girls’ basketball team. I'm anxious to get in the gym and start developing their skills. Their summer was basically stripped away. If you know anything about ball, you know AAU and summer tournaments are when true players are born.
My favorite thing about sports is the ability to compete and be with a team. I'd be lying if I said my solo motivation is currently as strong. I ordered a ladder and cones so I can continue to work on my agility. I'm excited for this to end so we can go back to group workouts and friendly competitions. I'm ready to jump back into team activities. Whether that's off-season workouts with the Bandits or participating in Denver’s LGBTQ flag football league, I can’t wait to be competitive again!
I'm from Dallas, Texas and still call that home for the holidays. I always have a soft spot for my Texans. I’m looking forward to watching the Texas Elite Spartans in 2021. I heard they are the team to beat. I'm new to the league, so aside from game film and previous records, I know nothing. I think the Denver Bandits are going to shock a lot of people with the new talent we are bringing, so let's just hope whoever is at the top is ready for a fight!