2010 Vancouver Olympics

2010 Vancouver Olympics
Welcome! It is here I hope to keep all of my sponsors and supporters up to date about my everyday life as a full time Biathlete. I will post regular updates about how my training and race season is progressing, which will hopefully provide a little insight as to exactly what my life is all about. With the Sochi 2014 Olympics fast approaching, I invite you to join me on my journey as I pursue my dreams...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Spring and Summer

I wrote this a while ago and a few of you have already read it, but I figured it would be a good first post as it summarizes my training and what I've been up to since the beginning of the season. It finishes off at the end of the summer and I'll continue from there with my next couple of posts...

Dear Friends and Supporters,

It’s been a while and I think an update about what I’ve been up to is long overdue! It’s amazing how time flies during the summer when I become immersed in training. It only seems like yesterday when it was springtime and I was taking a well needed mental and physical break after a long season of racing.

After Canadian Championships at the newly finished Olympic venue in the Callaghan Valley, I made the journey with a few other biathletes to Grande Prairie to once again work the Weyerhauser Pulp Mill shutdown. The work isn’t fun but the pay is decent, and couldn’t come at a better time as a season of racing quickly takes its toll on the bank funds!

From Grande Prairie I drove 8 hours north back home to Hay River. I arrived pretty tired from the Mill and spent the next little while relaxing and recovering. It was nice to visit with family and lay low for a while, but before I knew it, it was time to start training again. While at home I got to make a trip across the lake to Yellowknife to take part in the annual Sport North Awards Banquet where I received the Northwest Territories senior male athlete of the year award. It was an honor to receive the award and was great to meet and chat with Sport North’s major sponsors and supporters as well as other athletes from the North.

At the end of May I arrived back in Canmore re-energized and ready to focus on training again. After joining back up with National Team, the season kicked off with a training camp at Mt. Washington on Vancouver Island. It’s the perfect place for early season training and comes with a lot of bonuses. The resort was very accommodating and provided us with a 2km loop to ski on that was groomed daily (a little short but fine for the training we were doing). When the sun came out we were provided with stellar views and for once we were able to ski on top of a mountain and breathe easily at the same time. Skiing at a lower elevation was especially nice. There was still a ton of snow with easily over a meter base on top of the mountain and we had access to a shooting range minutes from our door. After skiing in the morning, we would drop down to sea level for our afternoon workouts which would consist of sea kayaking, running along the ocean on sweet trails, or mountain biking on some technical west coast trails. After a long and hard week of training we spent two days relaxing and surfing in Tofino which was awesome. This was our second camp at Mt. Washington and I’m sure we’ll be back for more spring training there.

From Mt. Washington it was back to Canmore again to resume training in the Rockies. We’ve had many good training sessions at Highwood pass, Mt. Shark, and Mt. Norquay. The testing blocks have gone very well, with personal bests in many tests, and we’ve been doing a fair bit of testing and monitoring at the U of C. Most recently we’ve been using and doing testing on the new roller ski treadmill housed in the Olympic Oval at the University of Calgary. The sessions on the treadmill have been awesome and I think it will become a very valuable tool for the team both for technique and testing purposes. On another note, I also now have a part time job working at running store on my rest days. So far it’s been alright but I’m hoping that I will be able to get enough recovery between work and training.

Most recently I’ve returned home from a short training camp based out of Revelstoke in BC. Day one consisted of a 150km road ride from the Revelstoke Dam to the CMH Monashee backcountry lodge. We were lucky enough to spend the night here, thanks to a connection through coach Matthias. Mathias, a former back country guide, used to guide out of this lodge in his early days when he first came to Canada. The lodge was absolutely amazing and we were treated with exceptional hospitality and awesome meals that definitely did the trick in refueling our bodies after a hard day on the bike. Day two consisted of roller skiing up Mt. Revelstoke while doing some solid intensity along the way. The 25 km climb switch backs up the mountain at a steep and steady grade climbs 1200m in the process. It made for a pretty tough and long workout! After a cool down jog to the summit it was back to the campsite to ice the legs in the lake before dinner. Day three consisted of cycling back to Canmore from Lake Louise which we did at an average speed of over 34 km an hour. All in all it was a pretty solid camp, except for getting sick with a cold on day two which I am still not quite 100% recovered from. Better sick now than in the winter…

Also keeping me on my toes have been the bears around Canmore. Today I came face to face with a black bear minutes from my house. I was roller skiing to training and was cresting a hill with the sun in my eyes and heard a rustle in the bushes next to me. When I looked over, a black bear was walking out onto the road beside me which gave me quite a surprise to say the least! It’s been a bit of a crazy year for encountering bears while training. I think that was number six or seven. Thankfully, so far every bear I’ve seen has gone its own way and I won’t be disappointed if go the rest of the summer without having any more encounters!

In between these highlights, the rest of the summer has been a bit of blur with training as usual. We’ve ramped up the intensity and stepped up the volume this year making many workouts a challenge. Some weeks of training consist of five days of intensity in a row which leaves you spent at the end of the week. Training has been demanding but I think my body is coping well and I hope that this hard work will translate into some serious speed in the upcoming season. Our first World Cup and IBU cup trials are fast approaching and will be taking place the first week of September and I now switch my focus to competing well at these races. I’ll keep you all posted as to how they go.

That’s all for now but I’ve attached some pictures to hold you over until the next update.

Until then,


Spring skiing on Great Slave Lake

Early morning hike up to the summit of Mt. Washington where a freshly groomed track awaits us.

One of clear days on top of the Mountain

Skiing in June!

Running in the lush forest on one of the many trails near the Ocean

Morning beach run in Tofino

Glacier crossing – Alpine hike near Lake Louise

Incremental test on the new treadmill – Olympic Oval, U of C (note the harness system in case you wipe out!) – More to come on this later!

The team at the Monashee Lodge – 150km North of Revelstoke

Taking the win in the first race of the ZRS series!