The introductory meeting stated the purpose of this camp – to enable the athletes to have a group training environment which may not be readily available on a consistent basis; For the coaches to offer support during the training sessions, and provide technical feedback; and to have lively and productive roundtable sessions in which athletes, coaches and guests can share their experiences on topics such as managing a long term ski career, technical nuances and recovery, and conditioning for this age group.
Camp began on Thursday with a classic roller ski on Bear Cub Road to loosen up and give the coaches a chance to observe the group. In the early evening the skiers were put through a tough mobility and strength circuit that, on paper, belies how challenging it really is.
Friday's warnings of severe thunderstorms never materialized and we held the morning bounding/ski walking session on Whiteface Mountain. The whole mountain was used, with the most experienced (older) athletes making their way up to the top by their last interval. These trails are steep in some sections and provide a continuous work effort of up to 30 minutes.
We started the workout with some competition. 3 skiers lined up to ski walk, then bound as fast as possible to the finish line. The athletes were then split into three groups for different duration intervals – ranging from 6 to 10 minutes. A swim and rock jumping at the Flume finished off a great workout.
The sun came out in the late afternoon making it hot and humid. But the skiers pressed on with a distance skate ski session on varied terrain. One particularly long steep hill provided a good challenge among the otherwise rolling terrain. This was a good loop to ski as it had very little traffic and consistently good pavement from which a 2.5 to 3 hour loop could be strung together. Everyone was back just in time for dinner and a chance to recover from the day.
This morning it is raining out but temps are more manageable and the Double Pole speed session should be fun. Later in the day the athletes will take to the trail for a run/hike up Cascade- Porter Mountain.
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