A Difficult Start, A New Team and Some Skiing on Snow
It’s been a while since my last blog post. The start of the training year has been pretty difficult for me. During May and June my training was constantly put on hold due to illness. After 17 days of illness in 2 months I finally started training properly just before the start of July.
Fortunately none of the illnesses seemed to be that serious. I just spent the time with a constant sore throat. A round of blood tests didn’t show up anything so we could sit here all day speculating about what I had. But the outcome is the same. I missed a lot of training. I missed training camps and a lot of on snow time at Vikafjell. In between all the illness I did actually get in some ok training blocks.
As I’ve gotten back into training I’ve been able to judge myself against other skiers and on some tests and intervals I did last year. All in all I’d place a solid guesstimate that I’m about a month behind schedule or a month behind where I was last year. So perhaps even a bit more than a month behind schedule for this year. At first you might think that being so far behind puts a lot of pressure on and a pressure to catch back up, as it were. I think that’s the number 1 mistake I could do now. I know of several skiers who, in the past, have had to train a lot less than me. They’ve still gone on to achieve great results in the winter. So the first thing I’m doing is not panicking. The second thing to remember is that last year I was in my best form at Christmas time. The season is long and there are still competitive races at the end of February and start of March. My training now needs to be tailored for me and I have to remain focussed on what I need to do moving forward. Fortunately, after having had such a long break from training, I have a lot of motivation and I’m determined to do things right. Similarly the forced break means I’m feeling pretty fresh. Normally by the time I get to July I’m already feeling the effects of the past 2 months of training. But this year I’m feeling good and looking forward to attacking the rest of my summer training.
In-between all my illness days things were happening behind the scenes. I had known for a while but it was announced in May that I was going to join a new private team this year. Jostein Vinjerui had coached me last year at Team Synnfjell. He had decided to leave Team Synnfjell to coach a new team called Team Telemark. When he gave me the offer to join the new team it was an easy decision to make and I accepted the place straight away. The work I’d done with him the past year had clearly had a good effect and I wanted to build on that into the new season. There are some pretty impressive names on Team Telemark this year so its going to be an exciting group to train with. But unfortunately I’ve not really done any training with them yet as all of their camps have coincided with me being ill. The time I had on Team Synnfjell was pretty good and I have a lot of great memories from training camps. Most of them can’t be shared on a blog, but it was a pretty fun two years.
After a week or so of full training I headed to a training camp with my club, Bækkelagets SK, at Skjolden. The camp was 5 days with 1 session skiing on Sognefjell and 1 session dry land training down in Skjolden each day. The camps is run yearly and t’s one of the most fun training camps I’ve been on. We sleep on air mattresses in a games hall and eat at the local tourist office cafe. The atmosphere in the group is always good fun and everybody is there to enjoy skiing. Wether they are a world cup skier, a senior looking for good national results or a 15 year old kid who just wants to go skiing. I got in some good ski sessions and did some technique work. We also had a pretty brutal skate rollerski interval from Skjolden up to Turtagrø. 6x8min with 800m of ascent!
After the Sognefjell camp I started to feel my training was really going in the right direction and I kept up the pressure for another week. Last week I got in well over 20 hours of training and a few interval sessions. I also got my first over distance session of the year. I had a 6 hour session split into 2 hour sections: 2 hours skate, 2h run and 2h double pole. I felt surprisingly good until about 5.55. The last 5min were pretty brutal, but I made it home.
The American skier Andy Newell came to Lillehammer last week for few weeks of training. So I’ve gotten in a few session with him. All I’ll say is if he skis like he is now in the winter then you’ll be seeing a lot of him on your TV.
The British teams’ summer camp is starting next weekend in Huntly. So now I’m having a few easier days before the training intensity and volume gets turned up again for the 10 day camp.