I got off the plane in Albany and almost choked on the amount of humidity in the air…I felt like I was swimming through the airport parking lot! But I’m starting to adjust now, and it’s so good to be back home with my club teammates in Stratton. Gus gave me a good scare in the airport, as he didn’t tell me that he was flying out to Park City for a wedding and would be on my same flight home. I kept being surprised at how green everything here is, and how many trees there are after being in the desert, and it reminds me a lot of Minnesota.
We have this incredible and amazing house donated to the team for the summer, except for this week when the owner will be there. The lady kind enough to loan us the house is a direct descendent of Walt Disney. BOOYAH! How awesome is that? Anyways, we’re living in the SMS dorms right now, and in the high heat and humidity I’ve been roasting at night but still somehow sleeping pretty well. I think I’m paying the price for 4 straight weeks of sunshine though…I got caught roller skiing in a thunderstorm the last two days in a row. It actually felt kind of nice though, since they were the only workouts I haven’t overheated in!
I realized the other day that I’ve been to at least part of a number of different REG camps – the Midwest one of course, but I’ve also visited the Western and Alaska camps. But this is my first time ever at the Eastern REG, and so far it’s been pretty fun. I love the chance to revert back into my “summer camp mode” and having all the juniors around has been fun. I’m impressed that they have been asking lots of questions, jumping in behind the SMST2 skiers, and taking advantage of having older athletes at the training sessions. Because we love helping when we can!
I’m in the middle of a solid training week, and it feels really good since I’ve just come down from altitude and have that extra “oomph” for the next week or so. To take advantage of this, Cork planned a good week for me with 4 interval sessions, 3 strength sessions, and lots of quality volume in between. The key is being able to recover in between, and having to sit still and do my online classwork has been a big help with that!
The week started with the uphill run test, as part of the REG camp. The SMST2 team jumped in, and Simi won the men’s side while I squeaked into first for the women. The SMS website has all the results and more pictures of the events – they update almost daily! Here’s the link to them: http://www.smsxc.blogspot.com/ and meanwhile I stole two pictures from the day, taken by Sverre Caldwell:
We went to Pikes falls afterwards, where you can jump a short distance over the falls into the cold, cold pool! Nothing feels better than swimming after a hot workout session.
This morning we did ski bounding/walking intervals up Stratton Mountain, and it was hot, sunny and humid out. The sweat was pouring off everyone and bugs would bite the moment we stopped, but I was psyched to see all the juniors put their heads down and hammer out their intervals. You can already tell who is willing to go the extra mile, to push a little harder, to really commit.
Naturally, the real commitment will be shown off at the end of the week with group skits. I somehow got pulled into the role of a group leader, so we’ve been practicing! Of course, it will primarily about embarrassing all the coaches, but it’s been fun coming up with ideas and getting to know the kids in my group a little better. Coaches: never underestimate your skiers. They notice far more of your idiosyncrasies than you’d like to know.