Beijing Blogs - Jillian Ellis and U.S. soccer team train at Qinhuangdao Stadium

Aug. 4, 2008

The weather has turned, and we've had beautiful sunny days. Almost every member of our group has commented on seeing the blue sky - so maybe the emergency pollution measures are having an effect!

Yesterday we went to the Dragon's Head on our day off. About a 20 minute ride from our hotel, the Dragon's Head is the eastern most part of the Great Wall and was built during the Ming Dynasty. The concrete wall that juts out into the ocean resembles a dragon's head, and thus the 3,500 miles of wall that criss-cross China is thought to be its tail. We wandered around for about an hour and then gathered down by the water to just hang out, enjoy the sun, and eat ice cream cones and popsicles. We needed this day!


Today we went to train at the stadium we will play our first game in. It is normal in our sport to be allowed one light training session on the game field. The stadium was very impressive, and they are expecting a sell-out of 32,000 for the Olympic matches here in Qinhuangdao.

Training outside in this weather is extremely demanding. Our players weigh in before and after practice to gauge how much water weight they have lost. This is done for safety reasons so they can replenish what they have lost. To give you some idea of the heat and the work rate of our players, some of them are losing between 4-5 lbs. a practice! The closer we get to match day (Aug 6) the more we start to taper our practices. Today was fairly light, and some of our focus was on set pieces and finishing. Tomorrow we will be just taking free kicks and knocking a ball around to stretch our legs.

- Jillian Ellis


EVENT INFORMATION
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Wednesday, Aug 12
vs. Missouri
Los Angeles, CA
0-0
Friday, Aug 21
at Long Beach State
Long Beach, CA
L, 0 - 1
Sunday, Aug 23
at San Diego
San Diego, CA
W, 1 - 0 (2OT)
Sunday, Aug 30
vs. Wisconsin
Los Angeles, CA
W, 2 - 1
Friday, Sep 04
vs. Virginia
Los Angeles, CA
L, 1 - 2
Sunday, Sep 06 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Texas
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Sep 11 - 4:00 PM PST
at Wake Forest
Winston-Salem, NC
Sunday, Sep 13 - 10:00 AM PST
at North Carolina
Chapel Hill, NC
Thursday, Sep 17 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Pepperdine
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Sep 25 - 8:00 PM PST
vs. Oregon
Los Angeles, CA
Thursday, Oct 01 - 7:00 PM PST
at Washington
Seattle, WA
Sunday, Oct 04 - 11:00 AM PST
at Washington State
Pullman, WA
Friday, Oct 09 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Arizona
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, Oct 11 - 1:00 PM PST
vs. Arizona State
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Oct 17 - 1:00 PM PST
at Oregon State
Corvallis, OR
Friday, Oct 23 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Colorado
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, Oct 25 - 1:00 PM PST
vs. Utah
Los Angeles, CA
Thursday, Oct 29 - 3:30 PM PST
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Berkeley, CA
Sunday, Nov 01 - 3:30 PM PST
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Stanford, CA
Friday, Nov 06 - 6:00 PM PST
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Friday, Nov 13 - TBA PST
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