Nordic shops are like pro bike shops. About fitness, speed, all carbon everything. Walked into one and the employees look like cyclists. While I’m here to cover the US Snowboarding Grand Prix, snowboarders are to skiers, like BMX is to road. Nothing against it, just not feeling their flow. Besides, we wanted a good workout and got one.
A climber on the bike
I’d never skate skied before and fell down 8 times on the first lap. 0 the second. It was as aerobic as a Cross race or a good tempo ride when I backed the effort off and fell less. In the sun and nearly 50 degrees, I sweated profusely.
When he’s not skiing, hammers the bike
Skate skiing is like rollerblading on snow with long sticks on your feet. The technique is plant with both poles, crunch your core, glide left and right. The skis are 1/2 the size of a cross country ski. Core and calves is where I’m predictably feeling it today. We skated for 3 hours. I enjoyed it so much, I want to get good at it; especially, when a grandma skated by me and said, “best to take a lesson.” What!
It’s the worst season in 50 years here in Park City, a Farmers Almanac winter, and the snow was sticky. I struggled with bringing my feet back together when the skis drug on the wet snow. Once I figured out I could flick my toes, left or right, and get the skis back in place for the next glide, I stopped falling.
It’s been a tough week for cycling with day after day of doping news. A break from the bike with the cross training was well timed and needed. Thanks to our friends at Delta, US Snowboarding, and The Canyons for the trip. Also to Ibex for equipping us with snow pants, liners, and casual wear for the parties.
Props to the Nordic pros at White Pine Touring. The 90 second lesson helped. Digging the Swix kit they carry too.