lørdag 19. mars 2016

Ski Season 2016 - Goals for Next Year

Just reading the results for today's Birkebeiner ski run and fellow Brit Andy Musgrave comes in just behind the leading group to secure a top ten place over the 54 km race.

At the other end of the sport where i am - fun &  firtness - in comparison i managed about 62km all week....all be that in soggy lowland conditions.

My conclusion on this year's season in two parts is that it has been pretty dire, soft conditions. Lacking a foundation layer from early winter is the issue, with big dumps making for soft edges.
In truth i wiuld have been better off dedicating the season to purely skate style, given the broad and harder packed mid lanes - despite classic being the predominant style and of course, the big classic distance races remaining so top, two of three of the local clubs drive the tramlines way too far out on the edges where the machine weight doesn't press enough beyond the towed weight, so the skipoles stab into indeterminate snow.
I prefer classic. It is more varied and i feel more power can be put down. Skating seems both lighter but more challenging on breathing and concentration. Like rising a fixie bike with say a 42-17 lowish ratio- you have to keep it going , side to side, side to side....however i am starting to feel i can use more power from my legs in skating, and my coordinatuion has become much better.
So i would say that given a short winter with 'mild' conditions again, I would stick to skating and avoid frustration with my skintecs. Given early snow and a "blue wax conditions" I would opt to train up for a 40 or even 50 km classic ski run, either one of the official ones or something with friends like the Nordmarka railway trip, or some circular route up on Hardangervidde or in Vinje.
Skating comments and goals 2016 - 2017
1. Concentration practice.
I find the metronomic motion a little irritating especially when my skis seem to fight a natural rhythm by having variable glide. I am getting much more of a feel for this though, as well as applying more power outwards from my driving foot.
2. Sidedness
I have as most skiers do, a right side dominance in terms of driving off, and have developed correspondijngly, better feel foe glide duration on my left.
I am going to fix this by
a) more double dancing, which forces even sided co centration of effort
b) circling practice - as per keith nichol's youtube nano lesson on this
c) no poles with concentration on left side glide to drive from the ball of the foot and extended glide on the right.
3. Warm Up and Breathing
I need to crack how to warm up comfortably on skate skis, and then also on effective breathing under way.
4. Duration
I want to extend the duration time wise by just getting used to keeping on going at a lighter pace for much further, aiming to do 10 km non stop - we have a training route here which is undulating yet not steep on the main section auch that you can always leg skate or parallel double pole, thus never getting a tucked downhill breather in softer conditons. I want to aim to do 30km on skate skis.
5. Speed
Speed means technique, power and interval training.
6. Roller skis- Roller Blades ?
More on this below
Classic 'kick' Skiing Comments and goals
1. Follow through to glide ski weight down
This is the critical thing and I think i have over exaggerated it , actually with the net reault that a relaxed run in diagonal kicking goes much bettr now end of season even on my ancient gravel and slush planks. It should be quite a fluent move with the weigjht not coming down unil infront of the other side's shoe - with a slight swing of the hip forward-  however not to overcook this as I have done recently. The mid ski will touch the snow around boot level time, but weight is not on it until a little further forward.
2. Duration and fitness
Stamina can be worked on. I think my speed is fine and can just grow with my fitness and ability. But stamina needs to be worked on. This means longer runs at the weekend and some medium hard one hour sessions ayt night after job.
First this needs to be time oriented - in combination with number of rounds. Then distance can be a goal in a given time to hold the tempo up.
Both Styles
1. Downhill skills and confidence
I am still bailing out too often and need to learn more yet also just go back to what works for me- a wide, grand slalom stance out of the tramlines.
Christy stops and general agility , being able to plough from varuioius stances to save the day.
2. Dry season training.
I always have november and now decemebr stuck between bike ( salt on roads and icey side roads and forrest tracks) and skis. I got a frozen should building up to elg hoofing early winter so have to look at this. I need to run in the woods and build this
Up pre season while avoiding injury.
Roller blades or skis are a real option to explore now. Baby steps first.
This year I am beating all the pensioners round the usual courses in classic and catcing them up on skate skis. The next step is to train maybe with better guys to challenge myself, or even get instructon. I feel my fitness is never good enough until about 8 weeks into the season, which means these years, peak at the end without stretching it much further on.  So i need some more intense sessions in Nov December and a reasonable consistent bike training theoiugn the aummer months.
I also need a new traoinijng buddy who is more serioius than either of my current pals
Ready for the new too.
The next thing of course, next year, or maybe even later this year, is getting my fjellski out and buying boots for them. There after? Hytte tur and maybe randonne skis. And back to snowboarding?

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