A few weeks ago, I packed up my Subaru full of snacks, masks and gloves and drove from Minneapolis to Vermont. I consumed a lot of coffee during this drive, was extremely careful when stopping for gas and didn’t buy any food to-go (hence, the snacks). It was a long push, but it felt so good to get back to Stratton Mountain and move in with my teammate/friend, Jessie Diggins.
Jessie and I have been careful the last two weeks as we’ve settled into our summer home. We’ve been quarantining together so we have felt safe training together, but close to home. We’ve been taking the necessary precautions as we move to a new environment and try to keep contact with others to a minimum. We've been hitting the mountain for some uphill running/bounding sessions with support from Jessie's fiancé, Wade. Together, this trio is making it through with lots of giggles, good food, and a Harry Potter marathon!
Let me tell you, it feels GOOD TO BE BACK in this training paradise with a teammate to help me get out the door! I'm usually one to gradually work into training again each season, some years I haven't even done intervals until the end of June or early July (this is late for most XC skiers)! However, with an early end to the 2020 season, an appropriate amount of rest in April, and a lot of quarantine boredom, I've been getting back into things at a quicker pace than normal.
No matter how "gradual" I am with intervals though, the first few sessions of the year always seem to hurt a bit more than anticipated. I'm still working on waking up my body after all the spring down time. Muscles ache through the night and creak in the morning, blisters seem to pop out of nowhere... it's a tough transition getting back into shape! My first interval set with Jessie was FAR from glorious and I started to question why I had ever let myself get "out of shape," but then I remembered how important it is to let the body recover. That way, we can come back stronger!
Aside from the aches and pains of the new training year, Jessie and I have been getting back into our routine of cooking up A STORM every night and spending lots of time tending to our mini-garden.
We're excited for the day that our babies will start producing us fresh veggies and herbs so we can get even more creative with our food experiments!
Now that I've been in Vermont for more than two weeks, I've started venturing just a little bit further from home. It's been nice to continue to mix up training modes and go running or biking with some other local friends. Without any training camps on the horizon, I'm finding it important to keep training fun and entertaining so that I can keep up my motivation for the coming months.
As excited as I am to be back in Vermont, I was definitely sad to leave the Midwest. I had such a fun time spending extra time with family this spring and exploring the backyard that I grew up around. I was able to find a lot of new trails that either didn't exist when I was in high school or I just didn't know about. I will miss my parents and siblings this summer, as I'm not sure when it will be safe to travel again to see them.
There has been a lot of uprise back home in Minneapolis this week. It is deeply disturbing to me and saddens me to see so much violence occurring in, what is typically, a very peaceful city. My heart goes out to the families hurt by this violence and to all of the people out there who feel unsafe. I hope that all of my friends and family back home are protecting the ones they love and sharing kindness to the people around them.
Professional skier, traveling the world, exploring the culture, racing my heart out.