This past weekend I competed at the Arnold Fencing Classic, part of the Arnold (Terminator) Sports Festival. The event was also a FIE Satellite World Cup, which meant if I didn't get my ass handed to me I would end up with International points.
However, I did get my ass handed to me, so all I got was a t-shirt with my name on it (in a legible font size at least) and nifty lapel pins.
The worst was that even though everyone there was better than me, I didn't feel as outclassed as I thought I would. I beat the guy mentioned in this website, but no one else. I think 60% of my defeats were psychological - part of me felt like I wasn't ready for that level. I was making good decisions, but I wasn't confident in making the touch. And of course 40% was that my body was just not where it need to be. I hadn't trained as much as I would have liked, thanks to work, and I was a couple hairs too slow.
The difference is that I was used to being in a pool of seven where 2 bouts were gonna be tough, and a good day vs. a bad one would be having a 6-0 record vs. a 4-2 record. At the World Cups and Div I NACs, I've never gotten a lucky draw so every touch is precious, much less every win. It almost feels like I am starting over, like I am learning how to fence all over again.
Next up is a local tournament where I can earn my A, and then on to Portland for the NAC. If I can get my act together at these two events - I may even enter the World Cup in San Juan... and that could be a lot of fun!