Prior to heading out west, the temps hadn’t dropped low enough for the snow guns to start blowing in Craftsbury so all the skiers, plus a few biathletes, made the trek north to Foret Montmorency in Quebec for our second annual Boreal Glide speed block! Foret Montmorency saves snow over the summer under a giant pile of wood chips and at the end of October they spread it out on a 2.5k loop (the Boreal Glide) which literally goes over a river and through the woods. For a short loop it has a wide variety of terrain so it’s great for technique work and doesn’t get boring. We made good use of our time on snow with two ski workouts per day and three speed sessions in four days. All our workouts were high quality and it felt good to get in some speed on snow. It was also nice to work on transitioning some of the technique changes we made in Park City from wheels to skis. One of the camp highlights was our afternoon specific strength workout when we underestimated how long it was going to take and ended finishing well after dark. We got some funny looks and a few cheers as we pulled each other up hills in the encroaching darkness. And no camp is complete without a mental toughness workout. On our third morning in Foret, we went for a real swim of a ski. It rained for the entirety of our 2-2.5 hour classic workout and by the end we looked, and felt, like drowned rats that had been put in a freezer. Fortunately the rain lightened up in time for our afternoon workout, and thanks to some extra clothes provided by Jake and our bathroom turned “drying” room, the whole team stayed relatively comfortable. Our camp concluded with a 10/15k skate time trial. It was quite valuable and confidence boosting to get in a race simulation workout on snow prior to leaving for our first real races of the season. Unfortunately I have no pictures of people so you’ll just have to appreciate my scenery shots (and a video of our time trial, courtesy of Jake).
Now you might be wondering what we got up to between workouts. Despite the lack of internet in our humble abode, we were never bored. We came armed with numerous movies, knitting projects (at least in the case of one knitting-obsessed individual), books, and an 1000 piece puzzle. We definitely overestimated the number of movies we needed to bring as we only made it through two movies during our four-day camp. This was largely due to the fact that at 8:30pm we would turn off the movie in favor of brushing our teeth and getting into bed… It’s possible we would have made it through a third movie if the 1000 piece puzzle hadn’t been broken out on our last evening in Foret and feverishly completed prior to our departure the next morning. Speaking of our departure, we managed to eat almost all the food we packed for the camp and only had to throw out one burger!
We’re very grateful to Foret Montmorency for an awesome pre-season camp. They did an incredible job maintaining and grooming the loop while we were. Also, a big thanks to Nick and Jake for all their support, and for waxing, videoing, and taking lactates. The skiers are now in West Yellowstone and the biathletes are out in Canmore so race blogs are on the horizon. Stay tuned and thanks for reading!