One Month Behind Six Months Ahead
Usually I'm ramping up miles at this time of year, while recovering from a long ski season and a series of March ski marathons. Normally I'll take it easy for a week after the last marathon before returning to roads and trails, somewhat begrudgingly, as the snow melts away.
This time I am celebrating the waning days of winter with some skiing, along with a slow, enjoyable, return to some easy running. At this moment (Friday afternoon), I should still be on a plane, heading back to Fairbanks with my knee all wrapped up and no weight bearing activity for another six weeks, followed by another three to six months of rehab before even starting to jog again.
Today, I went out for 4.5 mile run in the cold April chill (21 F), and later this afternoon I'm taking my son out for some skiing at Birch Hill--hopefully they've groomed there a bit this week as we received a little snow and the temps have dropped.
Skiers in Fairbanks are so spoiled. The conditions now are considered marginal, and there is talk of moving on to rollerskiing. Hardly anyone is out there. Runners are starting to run on the ski trails with impunity. NO!
This is a great time of year to get out and see what much of the rest of the Nordic world would consider average. Every year I bring out the klister to work on waxing technique (need a lot of help there!) and to enjoy bomber kick on fast snow.
Skating is also fun--the snow is dirty and crusty, but it's fast and you are forced to keep your hips forward to maintain top balance and good glide. Otherwise you'll go skidding out.
This is the time of year that we should be having some multi-event fun races and relays. How about a 20K with 5K classic, 5K snowshoe run, 5K skate, and 5K road run?Skate, trail bike, snowshoe triathlon? One friend recently suggested a seven or eight stage 100 mile extravaganza that involves Nordic and alpine skiing, snowshoeing, ice skating, ski-jouring, cycling, and running. Wouldn't that be something?
For now I'm just glad to be back running, slow as it may be. 4.5 miles today! Did I mention that?