The team just before heading out on a rollerski near Park City. We're missing Cliff Field, Ben Berend and Tyler Smith, but otherwise these are all the guys I train with in Steamboat.
The last two days we've been doing some testing in Park City, UT, at the Ski Team's Center of Excellence, aka central office and mega - high tech gym. Yesterday we, as in the National Training Group, spent the day at the COE - from breakfast at 8 in the morning until we finished the last test, hemoglobin levels, around 4 p.m. Fortunately they have a nutritionist on staff and there's always plenty of healthy food - with a spread of cereals, granola, fresh fruit, yogurt and bagels in the morning, and fresh baked ham and turkey for lunch-meat.
We did a variety of strength tests on the force plate yesterday a.m. After the basic vertical jump test, (which is measured by a force plate) we worked our way up higher and higher boxes. For the last vertical jump we came down from a 125cm box to the force plate.
In the afternoons we got onto the rollerski treadmill - which is definitely one of the coolest machines that they have. (I should say rollerski treadmills - although the one on the right is apparently older than me and too finicky to use for testing). Yesterday we did lactate testing by increasing the speed at every two minutes, and stopping to get our finger's pricked to test our blood's lactate content between each increase. They were also measuring our VO2 and heart rate, so we'll have really good training zones established after we get our results back.
This first test ended at about race pace - just before it got really tough. Today, however, we did max VO2 testing - and went until we couldn't. They set the speed at a constant 7 miles per hour, and then increased the incline on the machine every minute. It wasn't too bad because the test only took about 10 minutes once we got warmed up. However, having to breathe in and out of a tube is tricky.
Cliff Field pushing through.
Fortunately we wore a harness for the max test - because I ended with a missed pole plant and "swung" back towards the end of the treadmill. Without the harness - I probably would have crashed off and into the stationary bikes behind the machine in a bad way.
After the test they pricked my finger for a few more bood tests, and then
I'm excited to go through the results tomorrow. I'm sure I'll see specific places for improvement, and we'll get a good baseline to compare to in a few months, and over the years to come.
USSA officially named a National Training Group to the US Nordic Combined program. It's awesome to be part of this group, and to (finally) put an official name out there! Check out the link below for a brief article on USSA's website.
We discussed the issue of our development team not having a name this spring, but it's great to see USSA having something down on paper. I know my Dad will be happy - having been advocating for a name to our group a couple of years now. Hopefully this identity will help us in searching for sponsors and explaining where we're at in the sport.
Steamboat, and much of the Colorado Rockies had an incredibly snowy spring. There is still tons of snow up high around town here, and on my first day out here I took of advantage of some awesome skiing on June 3! Hopefully we'll get to go up on Rabbit Ears Pass and ski again - since the snow isn't going anywhere soon. It just has to get a little cooler at night and it'll be good.
Alright I've really slacked on this website for a while. I got out of the habit of updating at the end of the winter and never got back on. Anyways, I'll make an effort to update this regularly now.
At the beginning of the month I drove back out to Colorado after spending some time at home. I'm still training with the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, and we have an even closer relationship with the US Ski Team athletes and coaches this year. Although "the Ski Team" (as we call the US team) is based in Park City, we'll be together a lot and be able to train and compete with them throughout the year. I also send my training log in every week to the Ski Team coaches, in addition to my coach, so I have a watchful eye from above keeping tabs on my training.
Summer training officially started last week with a camp with the US Ski Team. We all took our first jumps in a couple months on the K68 summer hill here in Steamboat. It's a good hill to start off on, since it's relatively small and smooth. Too make things more interesting we took a couple sessions in our cross country race suits - rather than the thicker, lift creating suits we typically wear. Using XC suits exaggerated small mistakes that might otherwise not make a huge difference on a small hill. (Plus they're a lot cooler than jump suits!)
We finished off last week with an uphill time trial against the Ski Team, and now have a few days of training here in Steamboat before we head to Park City on Saturday.
Tomorrow, we're hopefully going to have a good crowd for jumping. A week long bike tour called Ride the Rockies is spending the day in Steamboat with an optional ride around the valley, and the city is encouraging the cyclists to come out and watch us jump. It'd be sweet to have some spectators - like being back at some of the big Midwest tournaments.
Where am I?