Sunny LA vs bitter cold Oslo

Lately, Carine and Åsmund have been training under quite different conditions and climates. Carine has felt warm sand between her toes when jogging in Los Angeles, while Åsmund has been skiing outside of Oslo with frost in his beard. Which approach will pay off in the end? Read more about Carine’s and Åsmund’s progress and thoughts below.

Carine

It’s now been approximately a month since this project started and I can feel the race getting closer. Which is a little scary because I’m finding it quite difficult to coordinate arms, legs, knees, elbows, skis AND poles to get the technique right.

I have suggested to my trainer that perhaps my poles are a bit too long and my boots a bit large, but she doesn’t seem to think that is the problem 🙂 Meaning this is what IT would refer to as an “user error” and it is very clear that I need to practice skiing a lot more. I also need to practice on keeping my balance when transferring my weight from one foot to the other.

Although heavenly, it might not have been the best timing to go on a holiday to Los Angeles just weeks into my training and preparation. I went from -21C to +21C, said goodbye to the snow and hello to sun and sand. I left my brand new skis at home, but brought my sneakers to keep up with my training program. I think it is safe to say that Åsmund and I had quite different workout conditions that  week.

beach2 Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, I am back home again and will stay clear of sandy beaches, pray for more snow and concentrate on Project Årefjäll for the next two months.

Åsmund

A month has passed already, and I am finally starting to see some small results from the training regime. While toddlers fresh from the kindergarden still snigger when they whizz past me in the skiing tracks, at least it feels like I have started moving a bit more like a skier. My resting-pulse is dropping as a stone too, from about 65 in the middle of December to 53 now. Extrapolating, by August I will probably have no pulse at all.

smundskiWhile Carine was working on her sand-skiing technique in Los Angeles, I focused on my own snow-skiing technique here in Norway. This is not as easy as I would like. I have far too many limbs to arrange, all of them with their own bad habits. My main tactic has been to keep my focus on one or two of Karianne’s excellent suggestions, then practice over and over again. I’ll need to keep at it, particularly when tired: when I’m out of breath (which still happens very frequently when skiing), my mind apparently resets, giving me back my old habits instead of the new ones. Darn! I hope it was due to the cold weather, freezing my habits in place.

Last week I ran into a new challenge: When the weather heated up, melting a lot of the accessible snow, my body apparently chilled down and gave me a cold. I decided to skip the interval training sessions for the week, and had a couple of rest-days in a row while drinking orange juice and watching videos about skiing-technique. That seemed to do the trick, all better now. The grand test will be interval-practice, which I look forward to with a healthy dose of apprehension. Intervals are HARD! I’m also planning on participating in a small ski-race in the Hamar area this weekend (17 km). I’ll decide whether to get a number on my chest for the ultimate embarrassment, or just join the group without them when I get there. Regardless, I’ll mainly be competing against myself during the race – and for now an average speed of 10.2 km/h is the number to beat. That ought to be possible!

NB: You can follow our journey on the hashtag #ProjectArefjall at Instagram and on Visma’s Visma Ski Classics website.
Carine and Åsmund have worked several years in Visma. Carine’s feet has not donned ski boots for 25 years and Åsmund’s perpetually delayed plan to “get in shape” have yet to come to fruition. Nevertheless, they have accepted the ultimate challenge: To complete Årefjällsloppet of 65 km in April.
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