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Rovaniemi, Finland: Excellent Ski Tracks

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

img_0002The Finns have been skiing here for over 3 weeks on  5 km of good tracks.  This is the remnants of a snow “bank” that they created last winter and withdrew from last month to make  a 5km Ski track with great terrain for kids, families, ant the  serious local athlete to World Cup athletes. They made 2 piles  of snow covered them with wood chips. Then spread it out this fall.  It costs about 70,000Euro for all of this. It is great seeing the young kids, old men and women to the World Cup Contenders using this loop 80% which out and back. Using at all times of the and night.

img_0005Here is the ski track.  As you can see it is awesome for skate and classic Technique. It seems to be groomed once a day at night. Now that I don’t have to work all day I can do some classic skiing besides skating. I will stay here for a couple of days then head deep into Lapland for some time trials and races.

img_0005_2Catching up with some old training buddies.

The question is why can’t we have this any where in the US?

Oh well! Back to the track!!

What’s Up?? Early Summer Update

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

Duncan Douglas 6/17 Skatemill Interval

Video Excerpts From Late Evening Hammer Session

Longer Video Excerpt Done By My Oldest Son

The Ski Season is over.  This spring was spent doing some introspection about what needed to be changed from previous years in order to attain my ski related goals.  Figuring out what the focus of my training was going to be. Getting used to the skiing treadmill in the training facility behind my house.  (Area 143)  

Basically over the last 3 years the main proportion of work has been aimed towards increasing the aerobic portion of the power curve.  This was done at times to excess.   Intensity was almost entirely below the surrogate marker of a mixed venous lactate of 4.0 mmoles/deciliter.   This  goal has been achieved .Now it is time to train my body to go fast and also to ignore pain and suffering. Now the goal is to ski fast and attain World Class  results in the discipline of Biathlon.  Considering my age, geographical handicap, responsibilities to work and family this may be improbable. Even being cognizant of all that the decision is to carry on.  

If mankind did not dream and go against the odds than nothing would ever get done.

Also I am of the belief that a situation is what you  make of it. Hell to you, can be Paradise to others. So along the way I hope to make people laugh, sometimes think or ponder  and overall have fun.

Right now I am working at work, working on getting fast, working on improving shooting, and  doing a little Bike Racing.  Driving back to Lake Placid, NY And Jericho, VT to do some specific Biathlon training.  Finishing up the 3 Weeks of Whiteface with the 8 mile Bike Race Up the Toll road Saturday at 17:30.  Looking forward to some Biathlon rollerski races. Generally training hard and smarter to realize the outlandish standard set by me for myself.

Psyched to tryout the new version of the 100 series Rollerskis  with the newest 98 series new wheels.  Just received them and so far they felt awesome on the Skatemill.  Have to install the speed reducers and brake on them.   Just like a helmet I believe for most rollerskiing speed reducers and brakes are not optional. By most rollerskiing I mean any rollerskiing on a road where you have to modulate your speed. Although I am not a lawyer, I believe that at least in New York State that by having brakes you are really legal to travel on the roadways.  Do not quote me on that to the authorities. You can take my legal opinion to Starbuck’s and get a  tall cup of coffee for just under $2.  That’s all it  is good for. 


Skatemill Awaits

Skatemill Awaits

Canmore 1st Biathlon Nor-Am 2008

Friday, November 28th, 2008

Arrived here mid-afternoon Thanksgiving day. On arrival at the venue a 1km man made loop around the Biathlon range was found. Of note there was extensive snow making in progress. There was supposed to be a 2.5km loop ready for official training today. The bad news it did not happen, the good news it shall be there tomorrow for the first a race a 10km Biathlon Sprint Race.  Not all was lost was able to ski and shoot , test and ski in some new skis. The course will not be too challenging, BUT when during the race tomorrow I bet it will be tough.  These races are warm-up races for the American contingent here, in two weeks tryouts start in West Yellowstone.  Unfortunately I have to travel back to Rochester and work next week, then will travel to West next Saturday.

This is a tough time of the year, a few days on snow even less time shooting then Rock & Roll.  Recovery is my main opportunity for improvement. Doing hard training, Motivation no problem, recovery big issue. Work and family obligations eat into recovery time. Finding out that when I start doing more intensity(being every other day, to every day) my body keeps shutting down(heart rate suppression, muscle fatigue) end up not able to do the work planned. Unfortunately two weeks ago I reached one of those times, a little bit scary. Being right before the races that count. So  crossed my fingers cut back some with the intensity, then  revisited some intensity, and luckily skied on snow around Rochester. Tomorrow truth.

Which Arm Position Produces More Power?? Is it Significant??

Monday, November 24th, 2008

In a future post this question will be answered by a study made possible by a  generous grant from the Level D Foundation, www.JackedUpOldMan.com , and Area 143. Not to mention use of the Ergominator an instrumented ski specific arm ergometer that gives accurate power output measurement.  Yes, there may have been other studies but the study to be presented at a later date is the study to quote or reference.                                             “The Ergominator”

More Specificity, Rollerski….

Sunday, November 2nd, 2008

This  is the the profile of the 4hr rollerski done Saturday on 3 hrs of intermittent sleep due to work. There is some of the the best terrain for rollerskiing in the Naples, NY area. Its totally awesome one goes up one humongous hill with a great view descends into the valley just to get to the next challenging hill. This was followed on Sunday by a threepeat of Gannette Hill at  just below race pace. actually at the top of Gannette the first time I passes a whole bunch of guys that  I mtn bike with and was going pretty close to race pace HR 182 La 4.2 the other two times I was in the low 170′s and lactate around 2.5. Gannette hill is amn awesome hill to test oneself it is 1.76 miles with over 900 vertical. This was preceded by intervals Fri am on Burch Hill,  Strength, working most of the night and 4hr Hill tour on Sat. It was feeling like winter Sat morning there was fog and frost on the side of the road and 25 deg out. When it is cold out the rollerskis slow down which makes it hard to compare times from when it was warmer out. One can follow markers such as heart rate and Serum lactate quite easily, yet they are surrogate markers and do not reflect what is actually happening at the local muscle level, which is what determines what the performance will really be. Too bad there is not a readily available power meter for cross country skiers.

This time of the year is the time to do specific training. Most of the World Cup skiers are already training on snow or about to. Many of us still have to rely on rollerskiing to get the job done. Currently I can only live vicariously through reports and pictures of others skiing. Unfortunately!!!

To carry on the theme of specificity last yeear I started rollerskiinig around Labor Day. This year I started rollerskiing while I was still skiing. So far I have rolled over 3,000 miles.  The truth about if it made a difference will come out in about 6 weeks.

% Body Composition, Some Insight

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

DXA Full Body Scan Image

What is the optimal percent body composition that an elite athlete should maintain?  What is healthy?  What is unhealthy?  What are the benefits of being a being a lean mean skiing machine? Does it make a difference anyway?  Who the heck cares?……. Well this  is one subject that many skiers are engaged by. When Lance Armstrong was in Tour form he was reportedly approximately 4-5% body Fat. If one looks at many other elite professional cyclists some look too thin M Rasmussen is a prime example. I’ve seen pictures of him that anybody could say he just doesn’t look right. Lance looked fit and skinny when he was at peak form though. Cross country skiers are the thoroughbreds of  High Performance athletes they go for a morning run in the middle of the ski season and are the greatest cross trainers of all athletes. Pro cyclists avoid stairs, and avoid any upper body exercise petrified of gaining one gram of non-specific muscle.