I have traveled to a different city on a different plane almost every week this year, so I’ve had my fair share of experience dealing with airfare bookings. If you have a credit card that has no foreign transaction fees: you’re in luck. If you don’t, time to get one! Read More
After coming off a high from reaching our first WTA Semifinal, it was time to refocus, regroup, and re-pack for the next week in Midland, Michigan. When tournament planning, we all seek to play the higher events, so my doubles partner and I decided to make the trek to the frigid Midwest. With our warm coats, long pants, and prepped mentality to deal with the cold (we are Southern Cal girls after all), we were ready to go… but all did not go as smoothly. On the surface, we were eventually crowned $100k Midland Doubles Champions, but here’s a look into what actually went on behind the scenes. From enjoyable community outreach to logistical nightmares and a crazy last day, our experience in Midland was one to remember.
*Happy New Year* Ah, the start of a new year with nearly all tennis players eager to begin their 2018 campaigns. Last year, I started my tournaments in the $25ks in Florida. While it was great competition, there were a few things I didn’t want to go back to this year: the long red-eye journey to the other side of the country, cold and gloomy weather, and steep competition (even in qualies) in a lower prize-money event. For me, it wasn’t worth the journey to travel there for a week, awaiting fervently to return back to California to play a much higher event in Newport Beach. With this in mind, I thought it was best to start in LA’s backyard– at the WTA $125k in Newport Beach. Little did we know we’d reach our first WTA semifinal!
A much anticipated trip– we were all itching to see Dubai for the first time. As professional tennis players, we are super fortunate to be able to travel all over the world for tournaments, and this week we chose to compete at the $100k Al Habtoor event at the Al Habtoor Grand Hotel in Dubai, UAE.
Greeted at the doorstep was another brown box, one of twenty that awaited my return from my tournament swing in Asia. A look inside revealed a sweet note from Behrman Communications, and a couple of my favorite COOLA organic products that were sent my way. It’s no secret that tennis players are constantly in the sun every day— from practice and fitness, to matches, there’s no escaping the scorching calamity of the sun. That’s where products like COOLA Suncare come in – to protect our faces and bodies from the harsh effects of sunburn and aging.
In a spur of the moment decision, I had less than 24 hours to get back to LA from Macon, Georgia to make my first Asia trip for tournaments. With excitement and anxiousness, I couldn’t wait for this new adventure of tournaments to start. Little did I know, we would hit some bumps along the way. From rushing to different cities, battling food poisoning and stomach issues, to unknown WTA deadlines, and an unfortunate visa situation, our 3 week journey through Southeast Asia was one to remember (AND especially to learn from).
With a round-the-world, hectic schedule such as mine, it’s highly unlikely that I get to take a road-trip to a tournament up the California Coast. The week of September 20th was the exception. An overdue recap of one of my favorite trips this past Fall.
After going through qualies, I had two tough first round main draw matches in both singles and doubles, making my run in the $60k Templeton event come to a close on a Wednesday afternoon. With no rush to go to another tournament (off-week), my friend and cross-town PAC-12 rival, Robin, decided to make a 2-day venture through the Central Coast’s vineyards, to the winding mountainous terrain and salty-scented beaches of the Pacific Coast Highway, to enjoy all that the Golden State had to offer on the way back to LA.
Take a peak into our wine tastings at Sculpterra and Cass Wineries, a little history lesson at Hearst Castle, and our expedition down the Pacific Coast Highway.
My tournament schedule in July landed me in the beautiful Czech Republic. These tournaments were a tale of two cities: one being most famous for its touristy attractions and petite old town, while the other is regarded as a quaint small town, with its sports complex being the mecca of the city. Nonetheless, I had an amazing time in both cities, while yielding some success on the court.
It’s officially pumpkin season, and I couldn’t be more excited to make these scrumptious pumpkin bites! It’s always hard trying to curb those sweet-tooth cravings, especially when you’re an athlete in training… but it doesn’t mean you can’t have a cheat day! It’s a treat with no added sugar (no brown/white sugar/stevia) and made with natural ingredients (well–minus a few chocolate chips), so how can you resist?! Using oat flour (simply blending oats in a small blender to get a flour-like consistency), natural honey, and a few more ingredients, these pumpkin bites are my go-to little treat for fall.
(I’ve had this post stashed away for a bit– my June recap)
After a good couple of weeks traveling through the Southeast of the U.S., and one doubles title later, my 3 week journey ended in Baton Rouge. Usually I don’t spare any time for touristy attractions or any sight-seeing (besides the roads from the hotel to the club), but this time in Baton Rouge was different.
It was just a couple of hours after my singles final in Heraklion, Greece, when I hastily began to pack my clothes to jet off to Croatia. While staying another week in Heraklion could have been an easier choice, there were better circumstances in the $15k Tučepi tournament in Croatia. One of my best friends from Finland, Emma Laine, was set to go to Tučepi, and we had agreed to play doubles there with each other. In addition, Emma took on the side-role of a coach for my singles matches, which is always helpful when you’re traveling to tournaments abroad. Despite running into some difficulties with an injury, and an early start to my singles than I had planned, Emma and I captured the doubles title and had a terrific time while doing so.