A few weeks ago I had the privilege to tag along with the US Ski Team at their mid-summer Women’s Camp in Lake Placid, New York. Fellow SMS T2 skier, Kelsey Phinney, and I were able to live in the house with the National Team and use the facilities at the Olympic Training Center to optimize our recovery between hard workouts. It was a 10 day camp with intensity every other day and long distance workouts on the opposite days. The camp consisted of skate sprints, threshold bounding intervals, a skate sprint simulation, hard double pole intervals, and threshold skate intervals. In the middle of all that, Coach Pat helped me with a lactate test on a treadmill at the OTC to make sure I’ve been training well the past few weeks. 10 days later… I was ready for a nap!
Through the tired legs and sweaty mess though, I had a chance to reflect on all this work and be really proud of myself. Back when I was in high school I attended a US Camp in Lake Placid during the fall where we did many of these same workouts. I remember doing double pole intervals in the exact same location as we did this summer. The entire setup was replicated--starting location, intensity, length, most of the same girls. The only difference this time? I was able to keep up.
Sure, I’ve been training with some of these athletes all summer, but hanging on in a workout once a week versus sticking with them everyday for 10 days, that’s a big difference!
Other firsts for me at the camp: we ran to the highest peak in New York (Mt. Marcy), I received my first massage mid-week to help with recovery, I went mountain biking in New York, I went swimming in Lake Placid (the lake downtown is actually called Mirror Lake) with some old college teammates.
The USST Athletes and coaches have been so welcoming to guests like myself, as well as the Craftsbury Green Racing Project Team. Living in the same house as them and hanging out between workouts have made me feel really included and remind me that I am right where I belong, which I am so thankful for. A busy week at camp made me both exhausted and excited for more. Most of the team took advantage of a few days off to go visit family and friends after Lake Placid but now we’re building up to one last big blocks of training before we head to New Zealand in a few weeks!