mmmm, springtime in Alaska!!!! It's just too good. Not many places can you nordic ski all the way into middle of May. This spring I decided I was going to live a little more of a "true alaskan winter" and spend some more time doing the kind of skiing where gravity is doing most the work. I am super lucky though, many of my friends are really into backcountry skiing, so I was having to hold myself back from going and playing every single day. Trying to stay caught up in school, and fit in some work here and there.... I got a bit behind playing that much. The good news is, for the first time I had a pretty active spring, which means I am not nearly as out of shape as I normally am May 1st. That was my first goal for this year. In staying in shape through the resting period, I don't loose the first two months just trying to build my fitness back up.
Doing some skiing at Alyeska
Crust Cruising with the UAA crew
Beer Relay Fundraiser Champions- The Incredibles (Pete and I)
Skinning in the sun... too good!
A lot has unfolded and happened in the last month since I have started phasing into my new season. For one, it has now been exactly a year since I joined the "Big Blue APU". I couldn't be happier that I joined this squad, and now I managed to convince my brother to jump onto the wagon and ski for APU as well.- so its going to be fun! For the past week we have been training hard in our annual "start up camp" Start up camp normally consists of two-a-days with lots of intervals, lots of skiing hard, and lots of soreness and stiffness. Last year I was nearly in a wheel chair by the end of the week of training with the new team, so this year I knew what to expect going into it... which is why I tried to bridge my seasons together more by keeping my fitness up during my rest period. But, of course, I still managed to put myself in a world of hurt all week. You know you are doing the right thing when showing up to training is more than just another day of work. It's amazing, every day, regardless of how wrecked everyone is, everyone is always smiling and ready to throw down when they show up for training. I think thats what makes this training group so successful. The energy within it is always positive, so it's hard not love it.
ADN Photo- nice article Beth wrote here: http://m.adn.com/adn/pm_1202/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=TjbCa8xU
The second big thing of my spring is being named to the National Team. I am super pumped about it. I think the National team has something great going on now. With lots of focus on young development, I think they are determine to build from the ground up and make something really happen in the future. It's also awesome because we have our little rabbit, Kikkan Randall to watch and aim for. Being named to this team means joining in with some of the fastest girls in the country periodically throughout the summer and fall and getting in some good training. This year, the woman's National Team, the Canadian woman's National Team, and some of the top APU ladies are all going to join up for a week of training up at Eagle Glacier. I don't think those girls know what they are getting in to. I have this feeling they are going to fall in love, and before we know it, everyone is going to want to be moving to Alaska. Anyways, I am super stoked and honored to be representing not only APU now, but also the US. Unfortunately, as always in this sport, there is not much funding out there, so being on the B-Team means covering most of our own costs. So I am still always looking for support.
Which brings me to my last point. For the past month we have been working our butts off planning and putting together an awesome fundraiser for the APU team to cover racing costs for the season. We will be putting on an auction with lots of sweet items including trips to hawaii as well as bikes, skis, artwork and much more. If you are in the Anchorage area, come out and check out what we are about! More than just a fundraiser, this is also a celebration of all the great successes we have had this year including USSA club of the year, coach of the year and athlete of the year. We are always looking for people to join the family of support and help us reach great levels. So, if you are around Anchorage, the event is May 10th starting at 6:30.
From here until May 20th, I will be training in town and starting up summer school before I take off for Bend, Oregon for my first US Ski Team Camp for 10 days. I think this year I am going to see if I can ski every month of the year. September might get a little tricky, but I am determine to make it happen.
Eagle Glacier.... better believe it!!