When Scottsdale-native Max Aaron started skating, there was only one rink within driving distance.
He initially wanted to be a hockey player, but an injury to his back at the age of 16 pushed him toward figure skating.
Aaron narrowly missed making the 2014 Olympic team. There were two spots up for grabs at the Olympic trials, he finished third.
Now there are three spots available for the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea and Aaron is looking forward to another chance to earn a spot on Team USA.
"I've been waiting for this shot, for this moment and it's now here and I can't wait to take it," Aaron said over Skype with Team 12's Paul Gerke. "So I'm looking forward to it and nothing is going to stop me."
Aaron said it would mean "everything" to make the team.
"As a kid I never thought this could happen, but getting the opportunities I have now and putting the work in, I can feel it, I can see it," he said.
At the trials, Aaron said he'll be skating to two well-known songs: Les Miz and The Phantom of the Opera.
The Olympic trials start on December 28 in San Jose, California, but Aaron has a full skating schedule before that.
Aaron flew to China on Halloween for the start of the Grand Prix season. Next, he’s off to France where the top six advance to Japan. He'll have a three week break before trials start.
He'll be gone from his home for a while, but the thing he'll miss the most, besides his family, is the weather. He said he'd love to receive a care package packed full with some Arizona heat.
"I love the heat. Really, I'm a desert guy I love when it's 115, 110 degrees," Aaron said. "I guess maybe because I'm in the ice rink a lot."
And for those aspiring figure skaters who may be watching him compete this year, Aaron said to "follow your own path, live the dream you want to live and don't let anyone tell you that you can't accomplish anything you want to."