June has been a fun month so far! Having completed my exams by the end of May I got stuck straight into a more intensive training regime.
On the 6th of June I took part in Ming the merciless, a fundraising event for the British team. Ming comprises of a 14 mile off road run followed by 30 miles of cycling. Having been exactly one year since the start of my nightmare season filled with illness it was nice to prove to myself I can still go fast, setting a new course record (Unofficial of course) on the run. The block headwind on the way up the Cabrach meant that the cycle was pretty tough!
On the 8th I set of for Norway for the first training camp of the year. We spent the first week in Vik, staying in a beautiful cabin situated right on the fjord. Training in Vik was great; we skied one session a day up on Vikafjell where we had around 5km of well prepared tracks. Afternoon sessions where either running, rollerskiing or strength. With the main purpose of the camp being to maximise easy volume and to work on technique, we spent a lot of time just going at low intensity but we also had our fair share of tough sessions. One in particular is still giving me flash backs, we joined forces with Team Synfjell to complete an ‘Elghufs’ session (literally translated as ‘moose walking’), this comprises of bounding uphill with poles for set intervals. Having been some time since I’d done a full intensity elghufs session I was a little apprehensive about how it was going to go, my main goal was not to get beaten by any of the girls! (Thankfully, for my own ego this was achieved)
The second week took us across to Sognefjellet, Norway’s highest road. Almost all Norwegian teams and many clubs use Sognefjellet at some point in June. A dedicated albeit basic hotel at the trackside caters almost solely for skiers. A great facility, although they seem to have become a little complacent in that the food quality seemed considerably lower than previous years and the track preparation was pretty awful for a lot of the week! Nevertheless, many good kilometres were had and I remembered that is definitely still a good idea to wear sun cream even when it is cloudy and drizzling…
On Saturday the weather was absolutely awesome so I went out for a crust ski before heading home. With so much snow still about and freezing temperatures overnight it was possible to ski pretty much anywhere on the surrounding mountains. I hardly stopped smiling for the whole 3 hours!