Siri Halle (33) was a very good ski racer and became Junior World Champion in 1991. She retired in 1994. She didn’t train for ten years, but now want to make the 2006 Olympics in biathlon.
For story and photos see: http://www.aftenposten.no/nyheter/sport/skiskyting/article1065022.ece
– I didn’t train for ten years. And I’m really talking about not training. I worked out maybe a handful of times per year. I wanted to try something different and lived out my youth. That has come to an end, life has taken a new direction and I feel for being an elite athlete, says Siri Halle to the newspaper Aftenposten.
She was junior World Champion in 1991, was put on the Norwegian elite team the same year but kicked of the next year.
She retired in 1994 and wrote in 1999 controversial book about her life as an elite skier. It included personal tales of system that included eating disorders, over-training, injuries, power miss-use and a sexual miss-conduct.
But she is now ready to return. With a gun on her back.
— I’m in a total different situation. I’m older, and more secure. I have a life to fall back on if I don’t succeed as a ski racer. I have an exciting job to return to. I can’t fall down. I’m not dependant upon succeeding. I’m in a position where I can experience all the positive sides to sport, not pressured, says Siri.
She also believes that sport has changed since she wrote her book
– It looks like the sport is allowing you more to be the one you are, says Siri.
33-year old Halle got a taste for biathlon after Joar Himle, Olympic Champion Ole Einar Bjorndalen’s shooting coach talked her into coming to the shooting range. Ole Einar’s brother, Hans Anton (23) is now her shooting coach.
She has cut back her job to 40% position and is aiming for the Torino Olympics with the help of her own support system.
– I’m not a part of anything. I’m on my own. I view it as self-realization. It’s an expensive way of realizing yourself. I’m loosing 150,000 in lost income (US $25,000) and will spend an equal amount on expenses. The Olympics is at altitude and I’m dependant upon at least two long training camps at altitude. I also have to pay everyone that’s helping me. I’m looking for sponsors, says Siri Halle to Aftenposten.
Siri started up training again two years ago and placed 19th at the Norwegian championship in cross country skiing last winter. That was before she cut back in her job.