One Athlete's Mind
Yikes! Lots to cover in this morning's blog post. It's been a really awesome month and a half of traveling, but I must say it's nice to be back at my house in Thunder Bay. My journey began around the 18th of July when the team and I loaded everything into the van and started the long drive out to Canmore AB. We broke it up into a 2 day drive, staying at a motel somewhere in Manitoba, a little over the 10 hour mark. The next day we hit the road around 7am to finish the remaining 13 hours it would take to arrive at our destination. While it was definitely the longest road trip I've ever done, I was shocked at how quickly the time went by, especially considering how few distractions I had to take my mind off the time.
After arriving in Canmore, we spent a few days training in my old home before heading up to the Haig Glacier for our first of two 4 day stints on the glacier. I had an amazing first 4 days on snow that week, getting tons of skiing with a huge technique focus with lots of positive and constructive feedback from the coaches.
Volume training on the Haig Glacier
Following those 4 days on the Haig, we headed back down to Canmore for one night, after which we did one last intensity workout before piling back into the van and heading to Revelstoke B.C. for a week of dryland training. Despite the nasty sand flies that drove a few of us a little crazy by the end of the week, it was a really great week of training at a great volume training venue, Mt. Revelstoke. The road to the top of the mountain is about 25km of twisting and turning around the switchbacks, and was about a 1500m increase in altitude, so a very good climb. Taking between 3 and 3.5 hours for me to reach the top, it was a great place for me to log some big hours and get some great climbing training in.
Sprints during a long rollerski up Mt. Revelstoke
Following our stay in Revelstoke, we headed back to Canmore for a few more days of dryland training before heading back up to the glacier for the last 4 days of our camp. Despite starting to feel a bit of fatigue, this last stay on the glacier was a really great block of training for me. Getting an early start on the morning of my birthday, myself and a few other teammates ran into the glacier, quickly got changed into ski gear once we arrived at the camp, and then continued on our way up to the glacier where I skied for another 2 hours before heading back down to camp. This was a really awesome training day for me, not only because it was the first time I had ever skied on my birthday, but it was also the longest workout I have completed to date, at a little over 6 hours. After completing that workout, I was definitely a little tired, but very excited for the 3 days to come. Throughout those 3 days I did a lot more volume and technique work, which is always the main focus on the Haig, and finished up a really awesome 3 week training camp!
Striding technique work on the Haig Glacier
After doing some pretty big hours over the course of those 3 weeks, it's safe to say I was pretty tired, and eagerly awaiting my journey home to Penetang for 2 weeks of family time. My last few visits home have been really great, getting to see my family and friends who I haven't seen in a while, and this visit was no exception! I was shocked, and thrilled, at how slowly the first week of my visit went by, especially considering how much fun I was having ("time flies when you're having fun" really didn't apply here). That first week included a great day at the Toronto Zoo with Jacquelyn and her sister Lindsey (where we saved the day by tracking down a lost child's family), as well as a very fun day with my Dad and Jacquelyn at the Balm Beach Go-Karts and Mini-Putt. That week was also spent getting everything ready for my fundraiser which took place on August 18th. Despite a very nervous first 30 minutes or so when we were wondering if anyone would show up, we ended up getting probably 30 -40 people out, and the night was a huge success! Special thanks to Jacquelyn for all her help both in organizing and running the event, as well as my parents, Pam Holt, and everyone else who donated and made it such a great night!
Myself and the big winner of the evening, Duncan Mitchell. Duncan won 4 of the 8 prizes available that night!
Sadly time seemed to speed up drastically for my second week home, but it was still a great week spent at home! Last Saturday, August 25th, marked the first day of the SOD (Southern Ontario District) training camp at Hardwood Ski and Bike. This camp is held every year to provide young skiers from across the province with a chance to get some great training in with like minded athletes, and also to receive some of the best coaching Ontario has to offer. This year I, along with 6 other teammates and our Head coach, also attended in order to give the athletes some extra help with coaching, as well as answering questions and talking to them about life as a full time cross country skier. The camp went very well, and as always was wrapped up by a running race on the trails at Hardwood. Having not competed in a race in a while, I took this as a good opportunity to practice getting myself into my race head and really pushing myself to get everything out of my body. I had a great race, taking the top spot by 25 seconds over a very speedy young runner who took 4th place at this year's OFSAA 3,000m race, and my teammate Jack Carlyle took third to round off the podium.
Following the race and the conclusion of the camp, my teammates and I headed to the gym for one last strength workout before driving to Pearson airport for our 9pm flight home to Thunder Bay. It's been a really amazing 6 weeks on the road, full of great training and great people. I'm now back in Tbay for 2 weeks before my next training camp taking place in Hayward, Wisconsin.
Phew, that was a long one! Hope everyone has had a great summer! Thanks for reading!!
"If you have inner peace, nobody can force you to be a slave to the outer reality."
- Sri Chinmoy
Jordan Cascagnette, Student-Athlete, Ski Coach