Thank You Dr. Metcalf!

Pedal N Pole is Back! We could not be stopped despite;
1) not posting since April of 2012
2) losing 1.5 inches of long bicep tendon
3) popping my SI joint out of place
4) getting a full time job online
5) enduring the worst Nordic season snowfall in recent Park City History
6) missing all Nordic races for the first time in 12 years!
Ok, I think that does it. Basically Nordic season 2012/2013 was kind of my 2009 global financial meltdown. But thanks to modern surgery, physical therapy, and a solid nutrition program-2013/2014 is going to be the best season ever!! Actually already got 15k on snow yesterday and it felt awesome!! Keep Skating!!
(All Pedal-n-Pole photo’s are shot on a Canon G1X)

Race time!











There is a lot of racing that goes on around Park City, Utah. Mountain bike racing, Nordic Ski racing, Cyclo-cross racing, alpine ski racing, paddle board racing: it just depends on the time of year. Since it is currently winter (or winter lite this season!), Nordic racing is in full swing. The Wasatch Citizens series 20k, which is the last of that series, is next Saturday, and the Round Valley 40k and 20k, are coming up quick on 3/10. A friend of mine who started Nordic skiing a few seasons back and has progressed quickly, recently signed up for the Round valley 20k. Like most citizen athletes in this area, he has developed a solid fitness base from doing a variety of mountain sports such as mountain biking, hiking, alpine skiing and ski touring along with skate skiing on a year round basis. With just three weeks left before the Round Valley races, he asked me for some advice on how to get ready for his first skate race.(WHAT!!?? I HAVE TO WEAR ONE OF THOSE!!??)

How to prepare for a race is a pretty big and personal question that some have based entire careers upon but there are a few basic things that a Nordic newbie can do to get ready for their first event.

First of all get ready for some PAIN!! The major difference between just skiing and racing is that in racing you don’t get to ski at your own pace unless you are at the front setting the pace and newbie that wont be you! So how do you get ready for the pain? The answer is intervals. Now I am not talking about doing a massive quantity of these with only a few weeks left before race time. The best approach is to do a couple of high intensity bursts while out skiing just to get a feel for what your fitness level can handle. A slight uphill works best for this kind of workout. When you get to the bottom of the grade just punch it as hard as you can go for 30 seconds. That does not sound like a lot but you will feel it! Try and do 5 or 6 of these with ample rest in between. That is only 150 to 180 seconds of pain but it will pay off when the gun goes off.

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Another easy way to simulate race pace is to just jump in behind a faster skier after they pass. There is no shortage of this here in the Wasatch. Around here, unless you have won a Nordic Olympic gold medal or World Masters gold medal, your getting passed so jump on! Stay a ways back but see how long you can hold the pace of a faster skier. This will give you a good idea of what kind of race pace you are capable of. So do some intervals over the next week and feel some race pace pain! This topic deserves a few more posts so next week I will discuss newbie race waxing and race course recon. If you want an idea of what real Nordic pain looks like, check Switzerland’s Dario Cologna winning the final climb of and the overall race in the 2012 tour de Ski.

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Keep skatin! PPPC.

Can you say dismal? We can and did this past Friday as this is what the Nordic center was looking like. (The streak of dirt mixed in with the red dye from bamboo directional poles really got me stoked to skate!). These might have been the worst skate ski conditions ever encountered by the Pedal and Pole crew! In some spots the impenetrable ice sheet was coated with a liberal frosting of “snirt”, a dirt/snow combination so slow, no wax known to mankind can produce glide. Instant forward rolls were the result of hitting this stuff with any speed(which picks up pretty quickly on glare ice!) Needless to say, spirits were pretty low on Friday. A storm was forecast like so many others this season. I wanted to believe…..

Then a crazy thing happened! It actually snowed! Not a massive storm by Wasatch proportions but more than enough to get the 5k rolled at White Pine Touring. Finally things are starting to look likeĀ  Park City, Utah!

This is what we are talking about! Blue skies and well covered tracks are the norm in Park City just as deep powder is the norm in the high Wasatch mountains. in addition to resetting the Utah Nordic season, all this new snow has also refreshed the local alpine resorts and the back country. Although that is a very different story.………