The Norwegian National Cross-Country Team members are training hard to fill the gap left by retiring stars. A potpourri of some of the team members’ summer training.
Anders Aukland – tough rollerskiing
30-year old Anders Aukland ended up tenth in last year’s overall World Cup, after several podium awards, especially in classical technique. Since this winter’s calendar is without any Olympic Games or World Championships, the goal is improving to top three in the overall World Cup.
The whole National team is training hard to fill the gap left by retiring star Thomas Alsgaard. New coach Krister Soergaard believes both Aukland and teammate Frode Estil are capable of going all the way to the top this year.
New training methods are being tried out. The women’s team is doing much more intensive training, and the men’s team is searching out harder and longer uphills to rollerski with the goal of building stronger upper bodies. “We come here to find longer uphills” says Aukland, “the hill we’ve used earlier is not long enough anymore”. Up the steepest part of the hill, Aukland is double-poling at a speed of 15 km per hour; skiing up the entire hill of 550 m (1800 feet) vertical elevation takes 50 minutes.
Estil tying for 2nd at 2002 Olympics
Trond Iversen – big personal events
Trond Iversen is not downsizing summer training, even with a five-week-old baby daughter and an upcoming August wedding.
“This has lead to some new activities, for example changing diapers, and I can’t just care about myself anymore. But the little girl is sleeping a lot, and everything has gone well.”
Iversen actually feels he has more energy than last year. “I train with more energy than earlier at this time of the year. I skied a rollerski-race last weekend to test myself, and did better than last year”.
While Iversen last year was part of the National All-around Elite Team, he is now on the separate Sprint Team. A welcomed change according to Trond.
“Last year I probably did too many training camps with separate sprint camps in addition to the regular elite team camps. I learned a lot last year, for example that there is no reason for me to follow the all-around skiers on the distance sessions.”
But this year’s Sprint Team also has a busy camp schedule, and if you’re on the national elite, there is no complaining if the timing is not perfect. “After the wedding we have a camp scheduled, wives not allowed, so we’ll schedule the honeymoon for spring-time.”