For at least the last year and a half, Kikkan Randall has publicly noted her desire to start a family with her husband Jeff Ellis. Their dream became a reality approximately 13 weeks ago, when Randall became pregnant with their first child. She found out four weeks later, and just this week, Randall and Ellis announced via a U.S. Ski & Snowboard Association (USSA) press release that they were expecting in April 2016.
FasterSkier reporter Jason Albert spoke with Randall, 32, on Friday — a day after the news hit social and mainstream media.
(To listen to complete interview, click “play” arrow below.)
“It was really hard to keep the secret over the last few weeks, but we wanted to get through the first trimester…,” Randall explained.
She waited until the U.S. Ski Team’s dryland camp in Park City, Utah, which started earlier this week, to tell her teammates.
“My husband and I baked a cake that was half blue and half pink, frosted it, and then wrote, ‘We’re expecting a baby’ on it,” Randall said. “At one of the team dinners we just nonchalantly put it out there and said, ‘Hey guys, there’s dessert for everybody,’ and let people wander over and see it and have that initial surprised reaction. … Once they saw it they immediately came over and gave us congratulatory hugs.
“The response has been amazing,” she added. “It’s incredible how fast word spreads through social media.”
While she’s experienced some nausea, Randall said she’s feeling pretty good and is still training with the team. She plans to scale back and will not race this season. Meanwhile, Ellis will continue to work for International Ski Federation (FIS) Cross Country, managing website content and social media while traveling to all the World Cup stops from late November through early March.
“Lucky for us our timing worked out so he should wrap up a little over a month before the due date,” Randall explained in an email.
“It’s pretty cool that you can continue your career and you can start a family,” she explained in the podcast, adding that she plans to race through the 2018 Olympics.
“I’m definitely motivated to go after medals one more time,” Randall said.
About the Author: New to the FasterSkier team, Jason Albert lives in Bend, Ore., and can often be seen chasing his two boys around town. He’s a self-proclaimed audio geek. That all started back in the early 1990s when he convinced a naive public radio editor he should report a story from Alaska’s, Ruth Gorge. Now, Jason’s common companion is his field-recording gear.