Saturday, December 31, 2011

Home for the Holidays

There are so many great things about being home for the holidays.  I especially enjoy skiing with the local junior kids and my past coaches, and past Olympians, Leslie Hall and Laura McCabe.  It's so much fun to see kids skiing and having fun just like when I was a junior.

Skiing with the Methow Valley Jr. Team
Another fun tradition is watching the fireworks our neighbors light off every year.  The show lasts about 10 minutes and we have a great view from the front yard.
The Gregg house back lit by fireworks
It wouldn't be Christmas without a few Christmas cookies.  Every year we have a ton of fun spending an evening decorating cookies with our friend Ardis.

Decorating Christmas Cookies
And of course the skiing in the Methow is always incredible with over 200km of trails and daily grooming it's  hard not to have fun.

Fast skiing and blue sky in the Methow

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Back From The Bed

It is wonderful to be home for the holidays.  The skiing is great, the weather is beautiful and my friends are around to go skiing.  Unfortunately I spent the first half of the week sitting in bed allowing my body to rest and beat the cold I picked up traveling home from the races in Canada.  It is tough to sit indoors and watch your friends play and have fun, but resting is the best way to be able to get back out there soon.

Eating plenty of fruit and drinking a lot of fluids.  

Thankfully there is no other place that I would rather be sick than at home with my family.  Caitlin takes care of me pretty well, but it hard to beat having your wife, Mom, Dad, Brother and Sister around.  I think the cold was a way for my body to say that I need to rest up a bit more before continuing to trade hard.

Now I am feeling great and ready to go.  I adjusted my training to accommodate for the few sick days and have entered a volume block of training.  Caitlin is helping me out with a peaking plan from her year with US Biathalon and with a few tweaks my Coach Jason and I have a good plan leading up to US Nationals the first week of January.

There is not much snow throughout the world right now, but the skiing in the Methow is fantastic.

Since I have been healthy I have been training 4+ hours each day.  It feels great to get outside after taking 4 days off from training.  Four days doesn't seem like much, but looking out at the beautiful weather it seemed like forever to me.

Caitlin has been training some serious volume and did an hour of threshold intervals today. One of the tools we use to improve our ski technique is to video each other and I got some footage of her.  It is fun to see how fast she can go.  The US Women are skiing very strong right now and are right in there as some of the best in the World.  We get pretty excited about training when we see the US skiers throwing down on the World Cup circuit.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

On The Road

60 days on the road may seem like a long time but the time is flying by.  This is my favorite time of year when all the hardwork of summer finally has a chance to show itself in the races.  

This year's new Salomon skis arrived stone ground and ready to go thanks to Nordic Ultratune.  My coach Jason and the guys at Salomon picked some really good skis for me this year.  In my first skate race on the new Salomon Soft Ground ski I had one of my best sprint qualifiers ever finishing just 3 seconds out of the lead.

Life on the road is even sweeter this year because I have my wife along.  We were engaged just 1 year ago after the first races of the season.  Do you celebrate your engagement anniversary? As my friend Ardis says, "Celebrate early and often"

 The man to beat this year is my ITA teamate Sylvan Ellefson (On top of the podium in the 10k Skate and today's 15k Classic).  I still have some time to make up but I was very happy to climb on to the podium for the first time this year in the 10k Skate, 15 seconds off of the win.

Tomorrow we leave Montana for the long drive up to Canada and Silver Star Mountain Resort.