On Sunday, Andy and I woke up early to drive down to Williamstown, MA to run a clinic for the Berkshire Nordic Ski Club summer training camp. A large group of junior athletes, ranging in age from early high school to college greeted us in sweet neon yellow and hot pink shirts ready for an over-distance ski to the top of Mount Graylock.
We split into groups based on speed and abilities. Andy led the charge for the older guys while I skied with a smaller group of guys and girls, some of whom only started skiing a few years ago but could already hold their own on the steep uphills to the Greylock summit. The ski ranged from 2 to 3 hours, depending on the group, and included both skating and classic skiing. We worked on technique throughout the ski, taking turns leading and trying to imitate the person leading and stopped part way up to do a few drills that worked on weight shift and body position.
The athletes in my group had plenty of good questions about skiing and college racing as well as some good stories to share about creepy motorcycle gangs. After the ski and a tasty and well-deserved lunch at the top of the mountain we returned to the camp for a short presentation and some question and answer with the group.
Some of the juniors hope to compete at next year’s high school championships while others want to race for a collegiate team. Despite the variation in goals and the various motivations for skiing, Andy gave a great presentation on goal setting and how setting intermediate process goals can help you meet your outcome goals. We also answered questions on everything from nutrition, sponsors, and our favorite places to ski to bouncing back from a bad race or an unmet goal.
We then headed out for a second workout, which included some easy running and agility drills. A few rakes and a pile of stumps provided great tools for building hurdles and I got to race some of the boys in the jumping and backward sprint race.
After two solid sessions, Andy and I had to head back to Stratton but we had an awesome day skiing and chatting with all the juniors and coaches at the BNSC camp and I was especially psyched to score one of the sweet hot pink training shirts from the camp directors. Thanks for a fun day and we will hopefully be down there again soon to enjoy the new terrain, nice pavement, and awesome training group. Thanks BNSC!