UW Health Sports Medicine 

Spring has sprung in Madison!

Wisconsin women's soccer head coach Paula Wilkins will keep a consistent blog throughout the  spring season to track the team's progress and other tidbits. Check back to UWBadgers.com for regular updates.

It's been difficult to keep up with my blog, because I have been traveling quite a bit these past few weeks. As I mentioned before, I was in Las Vegas this past weekend recruiting. The difficult part of recruiting this weekend was the weather in Las Vegas. The wind was absolutely incredible on Saturday and Sunday, and everyone who watches soccer knows how much the wind impacts the game. The wind was so bad that a goal toppled over, a goalkeeper scored off a punt, and several teams had difficulty crossing midfield when they were playing against the wind.

At times it was difficult to judge talent, but I was excited to watch several of the players we have identified and hope will come to Wisconsin. I never really had the chance to enjoy Las Vegas, as my flight was canceled leaving Madison on Thursday night. Therefore, I had to chance the early flight on Friday morning. Needless to say I wasn't happy to be getting up Friday morning at 3:45 am, only to get to Las Vegas to go to the fields immediately until 9 pm. It was a very long day!

I made one other critical error with my travel plans when I decided to catch the 1:15 am red eye on Sunday night. When I landed in Madison at 8:30 am I was completely exhausted. I thought Monday was going to be a productive day for me, but I spent most of it trying to catch up on my sleep. I hate daylight savings weekend!

One of the worst comments I hate to hear at soccer tournaments when it is cold, is when parents or coaches say to me... 'So did you bring this cold weather from Wisconsin?' I would love to state for the record, especially this past weekend, I believe it was warmer in Wisconsin than Las Vegas! 

This week training is very important as we are fine tuning for our games this weekend. We will have players stepping into different roles, so I am interested to see them rise to the challenge. We have three games this weekend, so it will be a test for us physically as we are low in numbers due to some unfortunate injuries. Next week I will have meetings with all of the players about their performances in the weekend games, and we will do some fitness testing before the players depart for spring break. I think spring break is a good time for the players to get a mental and physical break from spring training.  Once they return from spring break, we will have several weekends of games in a row. I can't wait!

Spring has sprung in Madison, and it is exciting to see all of the activity around the campus. The lakes have thawed and all the snow is gone! Slowly green has been returning to campus. I can't wait to find some time to sit at the Union and enjoy the Lake. It is absolutely beautiful in the spring here in Madison. However, I won't have much time to enjoy it until the players leave for the summer as we are still doing individual training throughout the next few upcoming weeks.

I always love to add a tidbit about Madison.  On Monday, I was able to get out and take a walk to enjoy the day. I decided to get pizza for dinner, and many people will tell you Ian's is the best pizza in Madison, and I will make an argument with them that Greenbush Pizza is the best in Madison. Greenbush is a small restaurant on Regent Street, and if you are looking for great pizza you should definitely give it a try. It took me three years and lots of convincing to try it, but now it's become an obsession of mine.  Please take the time to try it if you are in Madison.

My running has taken a hit this week because of all the traveling and training. I still have 749 miles to go, and I am hoping to complete 100 miles soon. However, games this weekend, training, and a slight calf injury (I am a wimp) are slowing me down. I might have to bike for a while until my calf feels better. However, my bike has been in my office for over six months and it hasn't moved. The funny part is that some people in the office think I ride it every day. I think I have them fooled!