Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Lake Placid Week One

We've been in Lake Placid for just over a week and have experienced a little bit of everything as far as weather goes. For the most part, we've had beautiful weather, but yesterday we had a team sprint workout in the pouring rain and this morning we had skate speeds in hot and humid mid-summer weather. We've been keeping ourselves busy with A LOT of training, but have made room for other various non-training activities such as Fast and Female, a school visit, trips into town to Ben and Jerry's, and a movie night to go see The Butler! I've loved having my SMS T2 team here as well as most of my USST teammates. The Craftsbury team and a big group of National Training Group juniors and seniors are also here. There is always someone to train with regardless of how you're feeling on any given day!

Fast and Female Ambassadors and friends
 Some of my favorite workouts have been the easy distance skis and the speed workouts. The rollerskiing around Lake Placid is some of the best I've experienced. There is very little traffic, the scenery is beautiful, and the pavement is smooth! We've been able to explore several different areas for our skis and I always enjoy switching up training locations every once in awhile. The speed workouts have also been really fun for me. It was extremely hot this morning, so as soon as we finished our speed workout, Jessie, Liz, and I took a dip in the ice cold river and then continued to sit in it for 15 minutes until we finally cooled down (or went numb). It was the perfect way to end a tough workout and I was proud of myself because it's one more step toward taking the dreaded full-body ice bath Matt is going to make me do when I get to Park City in October.
agility practice before speeds

Skyler during speeds - zoom zoom

Jessie and me doing a classic start
Beautiful day to be outside
When I sat down with Gus at the end of the spring, one of my big goals for the year was to get tougher. I wanted to get stronger, but I also wanted to get mentally tougher, especially in training. That doesn't necessarily mean doing one more interval or skiing 15 minutes longer, because I need to be smart about the amount of training I'm doing and not overdo it. For me, getting tougher meant gritting my teeth a little, becoming more aggressive, and skiing a little "angry", as Gus would say. In addition to a handful of fun workouts this week, we've had plenty of workouts that have helped make me tougher. The first was the L4 bounding interval workout we do up Whiteface each year. I can't remember a year when I completed this workout feeling awesome and this year was no exception. The thing is, it's not supposed to feel good. It's a really hard workout! Simply surviving it means you're on your way to mental toughness (yes, that's how hard it is). The other really tough workout that stood out to me was the classic sprint relay. For this workout I actually felt pretty good, but it happened to be POURING rain. This was also the case several years ago and before the final round of sprints, I was in the van, huddling around the heaters, and I'm embarrassed to say...crying. That year, I didn't do the last round because I was so cold and miserable. I don't think it was quite as cold this year, but it was still wet enough to get pretty chilled between rounds. It was a blast to team up with the juniors and go as fast as we could around the new rollerski track and completing the workout and being able to smile about it felt a lot better than sitting in the van crying, so I like to think I'm getting a little tougher :). HERE is a link to some video from our rainy sprint practice!
Liz, Jessie, Ida, and Jennie during the bounding intervals
Camp ends on Sunday with the annual Climb to the Castle and we still have a few other hard workouts between now and then. Here are a few more pictures of what we've been up to the past week!
Our 3 hr run in the ADKs

don't worry...our coaches have also been getting strong with their 100 pushups a day

Fast and Female
3rd grade school visit
Noodle games with the kids
Skate speeds this morning