Week 1 of Alaska…moose count is at 6

By June 17, 2012 No Comments

Seeing as this is Father’s Day, I’d like to start by sharing this photo. My Mom and Dad took me skiing before I could walk, and I would ride in my Dad’s backpack, calling out “mush! go faster!” Thanks to such awesome parents, my earliest memories of cross-country skiing are really fun ones. Happy Father’s Day!

Dad (with me in the pack) skiing with Meme and Grandpa!

This first week in Alaska has been super awesome. Getting to train and live with some of the best skiers in the world is such an incredible experience! Following Kikk, Aino-Kaisa and Chandra around works wonders for your technique and pace in intervals. Although I have to be really careful to not overdo it and run out of energy halfway through the camp…it’s easy to want to keep doing more, more, more when the training is SO GOOD. But I have to keep reminding myself that I’m training with athletes older than I am who are much more experienced and conditioned, and if I try to take on the same workload as they do, I won’t make it through the camp!

A big goal of mine this year was to train smarter, not just harder, which means knowing when to listen to my body and ease the pace down a notch. Which is funny because for me, it’s the hardest thing in the world to just CHILL OUT and relax! It’s never hard to find motivation to go train, but recovery is when the body builds itself back up and progress is made, and is just as important as the actual training. So this camp will be a good place to test myself – will I actually stick to my word and take rest when I need it? So far it’s gone well.

The Devos on the slackline (Don Haering photo)


Jumping off the dunes (Don Haering photo)

The other day I was thrilled to get to guest coach at Devo practice. It was so much fun! Those kids are so cool; they’re like energizer bunnies, ready to go do whatever challenge we threw at them. We ran down to the sand dunes at Kincaid park and jumped off them, which is a really cool feeling since the hill is so steep that you fly off the top before landing in sand. I definitely face-planted and swallowed a large amount of dirt that day, but it was absolutely worth it.

Getting our roll on! (Don Haering photo)

Every time I get an invite to work with juniors/devos, it’s such a great wake-up call for me. To be out there training with kids who don’t train for any reason other than “I like it” is an incredible reminder of why I do what I do. Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the little details but it’s always good every now and then to go back to the original feeling of “you know what? I don’t know how far I ran today. And it doesn’t matter. Because I enjoyed it and I was with my friends and I had fun”. So thanks to the Devos of Alaska for letting me join them for an afternoon session!

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