Everyone realizes that ski racers must spend a lot of time training in order to excel. Obviously, the skis need to be waxed and cared for in order for them to be fast. Clearly, time must be allotted for sleep and proper recovery. Once all this is accomplished, however, the racer still needs to get to the race, and that can be a daunting task in the widely dispersed American racing scene.
Traveling plays an integral role in the skiing experience, whether it
is a short drive to a local ski area or a flight halfway across the
world. Next time you take a flight watch out for these ten signs that
reveal you are a ski racer.
1. At the baggage claim or when checking in, you check out the other
ski bags coming through, thinking you might know the skiers they
2. You do know the skiers.
3. On the shuttle train, you try to balance without touching any of
4. On the shuttle train, you try to balance facing forward with your
feet parallel without moving either foot or touching the handrails.
With your eyes closed.
5. It's uncanny how accurately you can estimate 50lbs. And when the
check-in person asks you tell them you have one pair of skis and one
pair of poles in your padded ski bag, conveniently forgetting, for the
moment, the other 5 pairs of skis, 1.5 pairs of boots, down jacket,
and all your ski clothes that you have stuffed in your ski bag.
7. You wash your hands obsessively, take Emergen-C packets or Airborne
tablets like they're candy, and touching anything other people touch
makes you cringe.
8. You think that a layover is a good time for an ab workout.
6. You race your traveling companions through the security lines.
9. You have a complicated ranking scheme to determine which line at
the security checkpoint will be fastest. Each person gets ten points.
Plus 15 points for strollers. Minus two points for looking like a
business traveler and plus two for looking like a vacationer. Minus 8
points for having the laptop out of the case already, and held at the
ready along with a clear plastic bag loosely packed with travel sized
liquids and gels.
10. When you get up to use the restroom, which is often since you have
a phobia of dehydration, you do lunges down the aisle to stretch out
Frequently, traveling can be as exhilarating as a great race or as
draining as the hardest interval set. Getting sick from the strain of
traveling can ruin a season, but motivation from the lure of a
potential trip, to JO's, NCAA's, or to race in Europe, can spur
athletes to greater efforts, dedication, and, ultimately, success. I
crave travel and I love skiing so the combination of the two serves as
a powerful motivator.