Aug 24

Training Day

It’s 6am on a Sunday morning and it’s raining. While the rest of those my age in the UK are fast asleep, preparing for their early afternoon hangovers, I’m sat here with a bowl full of oats, berries and fruit preparing for an interval session at the track. It’s going to be hard work and slippery. It’s a 60 mile drive to the track and this week there’s no coach or training partner to distract from the effort. At some point, you have to wonder why. Fortunately, I haven’t yet.

They say winter’s champions are made in summer. Well, I can’t see me leading the FIS rankings this year, but I can be well prepared for the winter season. And this winter season will see my first on-snow cross country ski race. More on that in future posts. A couple of weeks ago saw my first roller ski race in Lancaster (results here) and next weekend will be another in York. Odd, since I’d never intended to race on roller skis.

That said, racing proved a useful training experience. First off, I had no idea I could ski so hard for so long. I also didn’t realise I could keep up with the leaders…for a while anyway. Four laps into the 1.3km course and I realised I couldn’t keep that pace for an hour so I dropped off by about 10% or so.That became more manageable. Experience watching out for other skiers travelling at speed should also help when it comes to the crowded on-snow race.

Most of all, last week’s race highlighted some areas to focus on in training. I lost power through the poles, probably through planting them in an A-frame rather than straight. Hence today’s job is to work on getting that pole plant right, or at least improving it. Having to drop off the pace of the leaders also suggests that I need to do some stamina work. I’m not too surprised about that since my background is martial arts, not athletics.

No more typing. It’s time to get my kit, my mp3 player, and get training.


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