Meryl's TeamUSA blog: Holiday Revival

Holiday Revival (12/24/13)

BY MERYL DAVIS
Charlie and I pose by the Christmas tree at the '11 Grand Prix Final
My brother Clay and I learned to skate on this lake by our home
in Michigan
With the holiday season upon us and 2014 drawing near, many of us find ourselves between reflecting upon the old and considering our hopes and aspirations for the new year. Most certainly, the start of this new year holds special significance for us athletes hoping to represent our countries at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in less than two months’ time.
Still, we too crave the recuperation and revitalization that the holidays bring. With the recent close of the 2013 Grand Prix Series in Fukuoka, Japan and the Olympic Games fast approaching, it seems only natural to enter a frenzy of training, preparations and single-minded concentration. Our bodies, our coaches and the fact that holiday decorations abound, however tell us to “calm down”…
Since many of us were young, we’ve taken part in seminars and training camps, learning about various aspects of life as athletes, both on and off the ice. Though it may not come naturally, rest and recovery are integral parts of training; there is a time to push and a time to mend. Thus, the mid-season combination of fatigue, yet excitement for the coming months indicates our need to partake in holiday revival.
Even so, periodization and performance planning don’t always allow for a perfectly serendipitous union of holidays and recovery. Having taken a four-day weekend immediately following the Grand Prix Final, Charlie and I, like so many of our contemporaries, will take minimal time away from the ice through Christmas and the New Year.
Having grown up in the Metro Detroit area, however, Charlie and I feel lucky to remain close to our friends and families while training. We train in Canton, Mich., with some of the top ice dance teams and coaches in the world. Even beyond Canton, Metro Detroit has steadily become the center of the ice dance community with the majority of the top teams in the world training locally. While having to pick-up and move one’s life far from home for coaching and training is commonplace in our sport, Charlie and I know how lucky we are to be so close to home.
So as most of us make our way home for the holidays, please keep your hearts and possibly a place at your tables open for the hard-working athletes who have left their lives and loved ones far away to pursue their dreams! Merry Christmas, happy holidays and all the best for the new year!
Clay and I often rocked the matching holiday outfits Throwback Davis family Christmas brunch

NBC Olympics: Meryl and Charlie's two decade road to Sochi

Davis and White's two-decade road to Sochi


A hockey player looking for better posture and a shy girl in need of a partner: Meryl Davis and Charlie White found each other in ice dancing nearly two decades ago and together became international superstars. - See more at: http://www.nbcolympics.com/video/davis-and-whites-two-decade-road-sochi#sthash.t5EzbvlJ.dpuf

Access Hollywood

Meryl Davis & Charlie White’s Fitness Road To Sochi! (Healthy Hollywood)

First Published: December 19, 2013 11:22 AM ESTCredit: Getty Images
NEW YORK, N.Y. -- Meryl Davis and Charlie White of USA performs their routine in the Gala during day four of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final 2013/2014 at Marine Messe Fukuoka on December 8, 2013 in Fukuoka, JapanCaptionIce dancing duo Meryl Davis and Charlie White are America’s great hope for gold at the Olympics in Sochi.
The dynamic duo, who are both 26, have been skating together since they were just 10-year-old kids in Michigan.
“We have grown up together so we feel like family and we are lucky to have found one another. We are always on the same page in terms of where we want to go,” reveals Charlie to Healthy Hollywood.
Their 16-year on-ice relationship is the longest lasting amongst competitive ice skating pairs. The twosome earned a silver medal at the 2010 Olympics and this time, they’re going for gold.
“We feel we have a lot of great momentum and we think the material we put together this year is being recognized. But, at the same time, we feel excited and have room to grow in preparation for the Olympics,” adds Charlie.
Healthy Hollywood caught up with Meryl and Charlie in New York City, where they were in town to promote their partnership with Puffs tissue.
“For years, Charlie and I have gone through so many tissues that our moms joked you should be sponsored by a tissue company,” says Meryl.
After all, skaters are known for their teary-eyed moments after their performance scores are revealed.
With just under two months until the Olympics, this pair is working hard to be in their best shape.
“Our typical training week is Monday through Friday. We are on the ice from 7am until noon or 1pm with a half hour break somewhere. Then, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, we work out at the gym for an hour and a half. On Tuesday and Thursday, we will supplement our training with ballet or ballroom classes. So we keep pretty busy,” states Meryl.
Unlike other athletes, this duo doesn’t have any rituals before a competition, but they always bring a special person to the rink.
“The one thing we always do is give our moms a hug to warm up before the event. Our moms are our good luck charm. They go with us to every competition. They like to tag along and we are so lucky to have them with us as support,” reveals Charlie and Meryl.


-- Terri MacLeod

NBCOlympics: 16 years and counting

The American ice dance team of Meryl Davis and Charlie White won the silver medal at the Olympics in 2010, but have captured two out of the last three World Championship titles against rivals Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada. Here the duo talks about how they met nearly two decades ago and their ongoing pursuit of the Olympic gold.
NBC Olympics: It was 16 years ago that the two of you first met. Can you talk about how you first got together?
Charlie White:
 Well, Meryl and myself started off skating at the Detroit Skating Club separately as single skaters. I was a little hockey player, also, so I had terrible posture. So I got into ice dance basically to correct that. Not to pursue a career or anything like that. And one day my coach, Seth Chafetz thought, "Hey, maybe we could just try skating with a girl to see how it goes."  And I was just, like, "Okay." I didn't really know what that meant. You know, I was about eight years old. And so I had a few try outs and then I ended up trying out with Meryl once.
I was kind of annoyed because she actually had no prior ice dance knowledge.  So I was pretty impatient with her.  But we were actually a great match right away. I just remember, obviously, being embarrassed as an eight-year-old to have to skate with a girl.  But we managed really well.  And we picked up verything very quickly.
NBC Olympics: Fast forward to the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. You ended up silver at your first-ever Games, losing to training partners Virtue/Moir of Canada. What was your take-away as a team from that?
Meryl Davis:
 I think our Vancouver experience was really a very prideful experience for us. I think we had worked so hard up until that point and I think that being able to put out the performances that we did was an experience that kind of opened our eyes to our abilities to push ourselves further.
And so I think that it was a really important point in our careers where we could be proud of what we had done up until that point.  But I think we really saw a lot of potential going forward.  And so it was a really kind of exciting experience on top of being in Olympic games-- just to kind of look into our futures and see what we'd be capable of.
NBC Olympics: What were you feelings going into Vancouver? It was really a lot of “firsts” for you guys to handle and be chasing after an Olympic gold.
White: Leading up to the Olympics, Meryl and I had never won a medal at Worlds before. Historically, it's difficult to get an Olympic medal if you've never even won a Worlds medal. But heading into the Games we were the national champions and we felt like we had a lot of momentum. Our focus was to really just skate our best and to take in the moment and doing what what we always do in practice. So we never really let ourselves fall into the emotion of the Games, which I think was part of the reason why we were able to skate so well. However, as soon as we finished it was sort of like a rush, like this dam broke and all the emotions poured in that we had sort of been keeping away. Your whole world opens up in that moment when you're on the podium and certainly for us it was very emotional, something that was very special and we’ll remember forever.
Davis: It's funny because I've never thought of it like that before. But, you know, they say your life flashes before your eyes before you die. Well, when you finish your Olympic performance your journey also flashes before your eyes. [Laughs]
White: Absolutely.
VIEW SLIDESHOWUSA Today Sports
NBCOlympics: What was that like for the two of you and Virtue/Moir in Vancouver? There must have been a lot of emotions going on among you.
White:
 Well, I think at the 2010 Games we certainly – as a group from Canton, Michigan – felt like we were going sort of as our own little mini-team. There was a lot of pressure and we really understood one another well and what we were going through as first time Olympians on the big stage. Being able to go with these people that we train with every day sort of brought a comfort level that maybe we wouldn't have had if we had felt alone. And I think it's something that helped both of us in the end to perform our best.
NBCOlympics: After the free dance, did you see each other backstage? How would that all go? 
Davis:
 I remember I was able to kind of hold in my emotions talking to everyone backstage.  And for some reason it wasn't until I saw Scott and Tessa and it was kind of the four of us – they were being interviewed by a French-Canadian channel specifically, I remember – and Charlie and I walked over to congratulate them and I just lost it. Just because I think at that point in time in particular we understood each other so well and what we had been through. I think we weren't only proud of ourselves but I think we were really proud of them and what the four of us had been able to accomplish kind of in our own right. So I think that being able to share that experience with someone and another team really kind of brought out that emotion in me.
NBCOlympics: Now that's developed into what people would call one of the great all-time rivalries in figure skating.  Can you explain how it's gone back and forth?  And how you're looking towards Sochi now?
White:
 Certainly since the last Olympics, Scott and Tessa and us have had a great rivalry. It's been awesome to be a part of. I think it's pushed us and our skating ability certainly to the brink. It's pushed the sport of ice dance. There’s been a lot of back and forth. [We won] worlds in their hometown, but at this point of our careers I think we're really just focused on ourselves and what we're doing to improve to set ourselves up for the Olympics and to win that gold medal.
We’ve been together for 16 years and we've been through almost every situation we could've been.  And we're really comfortable with where we're at. We're just looking forward to taking that step towards the next Games.
NBCOlympics: Do you guys talk to one another on the ice? Does that ever happen?
Davis:
 I think in really special performances when we're nearing the end, maybe three times Charlie has, you know, whispered something to me like…
White: “Go for it.”
Davis: “Go for it” or “this is it.” “Or enjoy this.”  Or… just some sort of not technical reminder but a reminder to just enjoy the experience which is a really special moment, I think. Because it never happens until that moment where we feel like we're done with all the technique and we feel like we've really done our job. At that point it's really for us to be able to kind of connect with the audience and try to create a moment on the ice that we can remember, you know, years down the road.
I was actually watching our free dance at nationals in 2010 and I very much remember Charlie saying something to me just as we go into our diagonal forward sequence.  You can – if you know what to look for – you can see him kind of lean over and whisper something to me just as we start that sequence. It's a really special moment to be able to share the excitement and share the significance of the moment not only the performance but on our lives, really.
- See more at: http://www.nbcolympics.com/news/davis-and-white-16-years-and-counting#sthash.WMWRb6R6.dpuf

Classroom Champions: Perseverance

Proctor and Gamble: Thank you Mom

Today show: Meryl and Charlie tell secrets

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Today Tuesday: Lysacek announcement

Figure skater Evan Lysacek’s announcement on TODAY Tuesday that he will not be competing for a spot at Sochi due to a series of injuries is hitting home with other Olympic hopefuls — who all know that, at any point, their dreams could be dashed for the same reason.
“It’s just disappointing as a competitor when you can’t achieve the things you want because of injury," Charlie White, who ice dances with Meryl Davis, told TODAY.com. “So we really feel for him, and our hearts go out. He really is so dedicated that it’s tough to see, but he’s a great guy and he’ll persevere really well.”
“As an athlete we all kind of understand the work that goes into what it is we’re able to put out onto the ice,” added Davis. “So anytime somebody’s not able to go after their dreams because of an injury holding them back, it’s definitely something that we all feel for that person.”
Other athletes, including skier Lindsey Vonn — who is on the mend from her own injury —tweeted their support for Lysacek.
Davis, 26, and White, 26, 2010 Olympic silver medalists who have been skating together since they were 10 years old, took gold in the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final in Japan on Saturday — leading them to a world record of 15 straight Grand Prix gold medals. With Lysacek out of the running, all eyes are on them as figure skating favorites heading into Sochi. While some say the U.S. figure skating team’s chances for success in Sochi look bleak, White remains positive.
“We’ve got our nationals, our U.S. championships coming up soon, and I think that’s where the final team will be decided,” said White. “It’s going to be hard to go wrong in every discipline. We have really fantastic skating, so we’re just excited to be able to compete, and hope to represent the U.S. at the Olympics."

16 Years in the Making

2013 Grand Prix Final

Congrats to Meryl and Charlie for their 5th straight Grand Prix Final win!  What an accomplishment!

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