Thursday, July 11, 2013

VT Summer Livin'

The past five weeks I have spent in one place: at home in VT.  I can't remember when my bags were unpacked for such a long time but it feels great!  The weeks have flown by, busy with training, projects at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, summer fun, and dodging thunderstorms.  Vermont along with the rest of the East coast has been a tropical rain forest this summer.  Monsoon season has brought heat, humidity and lots of intense thunderstorms.  You can guarantee that some point during the afternoon or evening the humidity will rise beyond return and the skies will let loose in an impressive downpour and lightning show.  The trick is timing it just right so that you are stretching outside at the end of a sweaty workout (in which case a shower isn't necessary) rather than halfway across the lake on a paddle board or rollerskiing on a very rural road through hilly and open farm fields.

A snapping turtle explores the lonely waterfront during a rainstorm. (Lynn J photo)
I love having these periods of time at home for the opportunity to train with my Craftsbury GRP teammates while focusing on individual needs.  Without any travel it is easy to make big improvements with consistent hard training in a familiar environment.  This summer a nagging Achilles injury forced me to target even more specifically some big weaknesses.  Normally my training includes lots of running and classic skiing.  For me, The feeling of a fast and fluid running stride or kicking and gliding up a big hill are hard to beat.  But the past month I had to cut out almost all running and striding and get creative with my training.  I've done lots of double poling, SkiErging (always a great option in the thunderstorms), aqua jogging in the lake (a great running substitute when the mercury has risen), and skate rollerskiing.  It was a test of patience at first but the progress I've made in strength and technique has been an exciting trade.

And I've grown some flashy tiger stripes in the process!
Keeping my new white mountain bike clean has been an impossible challenge on the muddy Craftsbury trails.

Lots of skate intervals (Sheldon M photo)

Testing lactic acid levels (Sheldon M photo)
Dumb and Dumber style moped riding is a great way to get video while rollerskiing (Judy G photo)

Another awesome part of being home is the Craftsbury Outdoor Center meals which keep getting better and better every time I come home.  I feel unbelievably lucky to have gourmet meals prepared for me every day with local and nutritious ingredients.  As GRP athletes we show up at the dining hall every day at lunch and dinner time and have delicious food is waiting for us.  So this week rather than arriving in the showing up in Carharts and workout clothes, we decided to bring a little more class to dinner one night.  All the GRP skiers and rowers picked names out of a hat for our prom dates and then we dressed accordingly.

Charlie and I (Judy G photo)
Kyle and Liz arriving in style (Judy G photo)
Ethan and Liz (Judy G photo)
Alex and Lawrence (Judy G photo)
It's time to get back on the road again and the next stop is Alaska for a USST women's camp.  I can't wait for two weeks with the team in Anchorage and on the Eagle Glacier.  I have a couple more days in VT though before I leave, so enough time to fit in a few more sweaty rollerskis, swims in the lake, and a maple creamee or two- all the essentials of VT summer!

Quiet moment on Big Hosmer Pond (John G photo)

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