Saturday, July 19, 2008

July Fun & Training

Greetings from a very hot and humid Lake Placid. The last couple of weeks have been very busy so I'll try to provide the highlight real. Over the 4th of July weekend Sara and I drove down to the Massachusetts coast to spend a couple of days with her family and relatives. We had car trouble on the way down so the 5ish hour drive turned into 10+. Not the quickest trip, but everything worked out in the end. That week of training was pretty big so we were getting out the door quite a bit to train. We were in an area very similar to Cape Cod, but it lacked the traffic and crowds. We had a blast exploring the area on bike and foot during training sessions. Below is a picture of me with my new bike. My family, and specifically my brother Jamin, helped me get the bike this spring and it has been a fantastic training tool so far this season. It allows me to do 4-5 hour distance workouts without stressing my joints the way a run of that magnitude does.Last week was my biggest week of training ever. I logged 27 hours of biking, running, skiing, and strength plus several hours more of shooting. During such weeks there is hardly time to do anything except training, eating, and sleeping. Sometimes huge training blocks can start to feel a little monotonous, but the coaches have done a great job of keeping lots of variety in the training. I was EXHAUSTED at the end of the week. All I could think about towards the end of the week was making it to Saturday afternoon and the start of my rest day. Even though I was dragging at the end of the week, I was really pleased at how well I handled the huge volume. Despite the physical load, I couldn't be happier because I know that when the training is toughest, I'm expanding my mental and physical capacity. Check out the video below. It was shot during an uphill interval set.

At the end of last week a group of kids from the New York Ski Education Foundation (NYSEF) were here at the Training Center for a junior camp and I had the opportunity to give a presentation to them on nutrition. I really enjoyed having the chance to pass on some of the information that I've amassed during my racing career. It's great to talk with young athletes who are genuinely interested in not only improving in their sport, but also in making healthy lifestyle choices. At a time when one in four Americans is obese and much of the population is suffering from maladies preventable with proper exercise and nutrition I think that it's critical to educate the younger generations so we can turn some of the negative trends around.

This week was a solid chunk of training, but it felt like a cake walk compared to last week. I scored some personal bests in shooting workouts so I was stoked to see improvement in that aspect of my training. I've got to do some major work on my rifle stock this coming week to make it fit better and I'm hoping that will be a key to making more improvement in the coming weeks. I've also been working very hard on some new ski technique ideas with my coaches, which are starting to pay off. We've done a lot of video analysis in recent weeks and the work I've been putting in is paying dividends.

I have an easy week coming up and I'm going to kick it off by watching the Lake Placid Iron Man Triathlon. Over 2,000 entrants have converged on the town for the annual suffer fest. I'll get some pictures up next week.

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