today is the day
Well it is finally here, the first of my big “tests” as a competitive archer. Tonight and tomorrow night I will compete in USA Archery’s indoor nationals. Due to the fact that shooting indoors means everyone is dealing with the same conditions, each region is able to host their own “location” for nationals, with a mail in system. Here in the Eastern region, Massachusetts has been the location for indoor nationals the last few years. Lucky for me, the location moved (within MA) to a town much closer to my house…45mins vs at least hour and 1/2.
Since most of you probably aren’t familiar with the format, here is a little background:
-3 shooting lines to choose from (fri/sat night, sat/sun morning or sat/sun afternoon)
-each day you shoot a total of 60 arrows for score
-you receive a score for each day (out of 600) which is combined for your total (out of 1200)
-awards are given at each location, but you are ranked and scored against people at ALL locations, as this is the indoor national championship
I decided early on that my goal would be to win my location (eastern region), as I realized trying to win the entire nation this early in my career would be a little unrealistic. Overall though, my goal is simply to shoot how I know I can. That is the great thing about archery (much like swimming), you can compare your own scores (or times) to see if you are getting better. I like this because I feel like I am in control of the outcome, I’m not depending on someone else to do good or bad to determine how I did. If I shoot a personal best but come in 20th, I’ll probably be happier then coming in 1st but shooting just ok for me.
I’m excited for tonight (and tomorrow) because it will be my first chance to see where I really stack up against the best female archers in the country. My goal for the season is to make the US National team, which will require being in the top 8, so I can’t wait to see if I am where I need to be, or if I have a lot of work still to do in order to reach that level. The only downside to the mail in tournament style, is I have to literally wait weeks to see my results nationally. Not every location is this weekend (we are the first possible weekend here), and obviously once the tournament occurs it takes time to mail in the results and have them checked and tabulated.