With the Östersund individual race over, the World Cup season has officially begun. For me, it was a decent race, all things considered, though certainly not the way I had envisioned beginning the season.
As you may have heard by now, the town of Östersund is having some trouble with their water supply. Since before we arrived, there has apparently been a parasite (Cryptosporidium) contaminating the drinking water and many of the athletes, including myself and several teammates, have been unlucky enough to contract the bug. For me it has meant several days of upset stomach, some throwing up, and general weakness and feeling drained from not being able to eat much. I didn’t train much in the days leading up to the race, so simply being able to start and have a couple of solid laps was great. I was pretty happy with my shooting and proud of myself for fighting through a less than perfect situation.
I’m definitely on the mend now, though my appetite is not 100% and neither is my feeling. However, I am confident that I can have a great sprint race regardless. My shooting is solid right now and I know I am in great shape, so as soon as I can get this bug completely kicked out of my system, I’ll be ready to rock.
The day was not a complete bust, though, as my teammate Laura Spector had a fantastic race. She shot 19/20 and skied great, ending up in 25th place! It was her first World Cup points ever, so congratulations to her! I think it’s a great indicator of where the US women can be this year.
The men begin their season tonight with the 20km Individual. A few of the men are recovering from Crypto symptoms as well, but hopefully we’ll all be back to 100% in a few days. Off we go!