Week of January 2 - 8

Reminder to Appreciate Your Health.

The week started off great (see gallery below). Monday I went up to the Gulf of Slides after touring around this past weekend and getting skunked. Surprisingly, this was only my second time in this zone, ever. Jerimy Arnold and Dave Soroka joined for a day or touring as well as a lot of squandered time snapping photos but I'd say it was well worth it. The snowpack was stable and we were able to get four decent runs in. 

Tuesday was a recon mission up to King Ravine with Ryan Kelly. We knew it wasn't going to be easy getting to the floor of the ravine but that's half the fun right? The Gorham side is definitely lacking snow but I was hoping that with the recent storm that the south winds would have filled things in a little bit. Well those south winds were still whipping and funneled right down into the ravine. We spent about two hours getting to the trail junction with the Subway before deciding to call it. Low visibility was also really going to complicate things. If the weather had been better then we could have justified pushing on but we decided to salvage the day by heading back to the Appalacia trailhead and redirect to Pinkham. Pinkham was protected from the weather and we were able to ski Hillman's under low visibility but excellent conditions.

The rest of the week fell apart on Wednesday. After taking my meisters run I decided for an extra training run on the GS course set on the comp slope. I have new racing boots and wanted to working on getting forward and flexing them to see how they felt in a "real" course. I had already skied the course twice and I didn't think much of taking a third run before leaving the mountain. On the third of fourth gate I felt a back muscle strain and didn't realize the severity until a few hours later when the pain peaked, making me question how bad was this injury - 1 week? 2 weeks? more? There wasn't much to do except for resting and using a heat pack and ibuprofen to calm it down. 

I was still able to get on the bike but it wasn't until Sunday AM that I first noticed any sign of improvement. Today is about the same as Sunday but things seem to be heading in the right direction. It was a scare and a reminder to dial things back to salvage the awesome winter that is shaping up to be. I can't imagine being sidelined for more than a weekend so here's to a speedy recovery!


Monday: Gulf of Slides
Tuesday: King Ravine Recon / Hillman's
Wednesday: Cranmore Mountain Meisters & Back Strain!
Thursday: Off
Friday: Trainer (1hr)
Saturday: Trainer (2.5hr)
Sunday: Trainer (26min)

Week of December 12 - 18

Early Season Trip to Idaho!

This was a big week, or rather build up heading into a big weekend. I had a lot of energy and motivation over the past few weeks to cram what skiing I could to prepare for the first SkiMo races of the season. They didn't go exactly as planned but the experience was well worth the money and effort to get there. More details on those races coming soon.

The week in general was low key with a nice powder day up at Pinkham Notch followed by a few easy days leading into Idaho. The week was capped off by a nice and easy tour in the mountains just outside of Boise so enjoy the gallery below:

Monday: Ski - Wildcat / Sherb
Tuesday: A couple laps at KP, Powder Hour
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Travel
Friday: Lift Served Brundage / Vertical Race
Saturday: Brundage Northwest Passage DNF
Sunday: Boise Backcountry Tour: Mores Creek Summit






Week of Nov 28 - Dec 4

Volume Bump.

This is what a good week is supposed to look like. Finally everything clicked and I was able to log a ton of endurance distance activities. The workouts have been limited but that's not a priority right now. The next week or two will shift back towards skiing building up to the Idaho SkiMo race.  Here are the stats:

Monday: Run - 13 miles - 1hr 50mins - 2,100'
Tuesday: Bike - 2hrs - 275w
               Yoga 1hr
Wednesday: Ski - 8,000' - 3:17hrs
Thursday: Roller Ski - 10 miles - 336' - 1hr
                 Bike - 45 mins - 236w
                 Circuits - 1hr
Friday:  Hike - 1,200' - 1hr15mins
             Bike - 1hr 30mins - 243w
Saturday: Run - 12 Miles - 1hr 42mins - 2,000'
Sunday: Ski - 10,300' - 5hrs 20 mins (Finally a solid week in my Travers Carbon Boots & Transalp Skis).

Total Vert: ~24k
Total Time: 20hrs 40mins

Week of November 21 - 27

Turkey Week.

Fun week trying to do a little of everything but not much of anything in particular. Training fell victim to family, travel, and lack of snow but I'm not concerned with the break in activity. Surprisingly most of my activity was running, capped off with the Purity Spring Turkey Trot. That race is right down the road and we also needed to borrow some chairs / table for Thanksgiving so there's really no excuse to skip out. It's also a good motivator as the young punks show up and I haven't done anything uptempo in a while. The course is on the nordic trails behind the Inn - a couple laps and this year the course was in good condition (no snow) but still quite a bit of leaf litter. I broke out some new HOKA Speedgoats for the occasion and was excited to see how the lack of running would result in this 5k. From the start I wasn't too surprised to settle into 6th place. This happens at most races where kids go out too hard. I wasn't feeling fast but knew I what pace I had in me so at least I would race smart and put down the fastest time I was capable of. On the second lap I moved up to 4th place, keeping Torin LaLiberte and Andrew Doherty within 10 seconds. Torin won last year so my goal was to keep him in range. On the second lap they weren't slowing down and kept a gap on me. After the last climb I was able to catch up and pass both of them with a half mile to go. The winner, Taylor Days-Merrill had a healthy gap on all of us but I was able to hold on to second place to keep my podium streak alive. I'm happy with my effort, and given my lack of run fitness I wasn't surprised to be a little slower pace than last year. On the positive side, all the biking and hiking seems to be paying off and hopefully that will translate to a respectable SkiMo fitness. 

Results | Strava

Weekly Photos: 

Week of November 14 - 20

Ski Season Starts Next Week?

Busy Busy Busy! This week was hectic mixing in more events as ski season ramps up. From the training perspective it was solid. Like last week, I was able to balance hiking with biking and mix in a few small running efforts on the descents. My body feels near 100% and I'm hesitant to jump back into running as my base training. I was able to log three sessions on the bike trainer, the last being a 2 hr effort with 4 x 14-19min "hills" which was a real test. I've never been able to mentally push myself past a 1.5hr on the trainer so this was a great indicator of my current motivation to get [more] fit. 

The highlight though was putting on the skis and lapping Bretton Woods on Wednesday. It helped the confidence to go through the motions of transitioning between skinning and skiing on the race skis. Wait, the real highlight was picking up some of my Fischer Ski Gear for the season which included a new pair of Hannibal 100s, Transalp 80s, and Carbon Travers Boots. New gear is always a great motivator. 

And I launched the online shop where I'll be the only east coast dealer of Fischer's complete alpine touring line. If you're looking for touring equipment, including Ski Mountaineering gear, this is one of the only shops on the east coast. While it's not brick and mortar, it's local [free] shipping and supports the local backcountry alliances in New England. 

Lastly, it was a big week for the Granite Backcountry Alliance. We had a table / presentation in Dover on Wednesday night to benefit Friends of Tuckerman Ravine. Then Thursday morning I drove to Mt Abram in Maine to represent GBA at the Mahoosuc Community Trail Symposium. Then Saturday we had our first fundraiser / film fest and it was a huge turnout. We were turning people away because we hit capacity so early. The community here in the valley is strong and it's exciting to see how it develops over the next few winters. If you're not a member, sign up now for 20% off all products in my store. 

Some photos and video from the week: 

Week of November 7 - 13

Ramped Up.

Seven hours biking, 17k+ vert hiking / skiing, and overall a ton of activity this week. Numbers aside, it was a beautiful week to be outside as we transition into winter. The diminishing sunlight hours haven't been an issue as I don't mind hiking out in the dark and the bike trainer is surprisingly tolerable. My body feels the work and is responding well. This is what my training will more or less look like for the next few weeks - bike every other day for 1.5hrs+ and hike/run/ski those other days and focus on stacking vert. On top of these numbers I also got in an hour of yoga and dryland. 

Photos from the week: