Hi Ski Post,
I hope you all have been enjoying your summers wherever you are! Here in Craftsbury, things have really started to take off and the adventures of summer training are in full swing. One of my favorite parts of the summer is having access to so many different activities. Ski training is unique because pretty much any aerobic activity is great cross-training, and so there is always a variety of ways to get fit and not get too bored with any one thing.
Probably my favorite cross-training activity is getting out on my mountain bike. I started riding when I was in college and it has been really fun to learn a new skill and to progress a little more each year. It took me a while to get used to the wet, rocky, and root-fill trails of Vermont (no smooth western dust out here!), but now that I’ve got the hang of it, (mostly?),it is an absolute blast!
(Easy golden hour ride at Heaven’s Bench at Kingdom Trails)
One of the great things about being in Craftsbury is that we are so close to the Kingdom Trials, a vast and extremely well maintained mountain bike mecca, located in Burke, VT. This past week, I spent a few days at “bike camp”, camping out, biking everyday, and working on building up some skills. I love the mental challenge of tackling technical sections of trail and overcoming the fear of pushing the limits on my bike. Besides being just plain fun, I think it is also a great way to add dynamic physical and mental stimulus that is diffent from day-to-day ski training.
(right: riding a rock feature in Burke. I would not have had the courage to ride this a year ago and the progression is really exciting!)
After my bike-cation, it was time to focus up a bit and get ready for the upcoming weekend, featuring the first rollerski race of the season: the Lost Nation Roll. This year, the race coincided with the Eastern REG Camp, and so there was plenty of young talent out on the loop. The first race effort of the year is always a bit of a gamble, but there is a certain thrill to putting on the bib again and pushing hard. We were lucky to have matched rollerskis, (provided by Enjoy Winter!) for the event, making the race as fair as possible. The GRP women showed some early summer fitness and nabbed two of the podium spots.
(Lapping through the stadium at the Lost Nation Rollerski Race)
Between biking and racing, the team has been getting out on the trails, including an OD up Mount Mansfield. It was a beautiful day, and we were lucky to have amazing views from the top, something that I always appreciate.
(left: climbing the ladders to the top of Mt. Mansfield)
(right: GRP women at the top of VT)
Up next, a handful of the GRP skiers and biathletes, are headed to New Hampshire to race the Loon Mountain Race on July 10th. This race has quite the reputation for being absolutely brutal
so I am both excited and a bit nervous to take it on. At the end of the day, it's just another great oppurtunity to ‘suffer beautifully’ and compete against some of the best runners in the country.
Until next time, Annika