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Technique Videos to browse
Dec 6, 2016, 5:54 am

 

SKIER's - Double Pole! Watch, listen, learn.  

 

Work on your Double Pole: 

http://www.cxcacademy.com/site_pages/wordpress/?portfolio=working-on-classic-double-pole

Double Pole Kick: 

 http://www.cxcacademy.com/site_pages/wordpress/?portfolio=working-on-kick-double-pole

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Skiers- get your kick wax method down!  

Watch the below video from ToKo. 

 https://tokous.com/video-grip-wax-application-to-cross-country-skis/

 ___________________________________________________________________

Your training this month. Getting on snow early is important to build up balance and stability. Additionally, if you are forced to transition back to rollerskis a few times, you’ll have that snow feeling.

As far as training goes, the plan still calls for some intensity but also adds a little volume taking into account the increase in early season skiing. 

Strength training. In this period we will back a little with the amount of strength training we are doing and primarily look to maintain the gains we have made throughout the year.

By backing off slightly with the strength training load, we minimize the chance of overloading our bodies as this is a very important time of year.

Main focus of this type of strength training is to keep volumes low but still hit all of the major muscle groups. 

 

 

CLASSIC SKIING TECHNIQUE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1TJP4V3P7g  

 

SKATE SKIING TECHNIQUE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F4xUXI6rQgY&t=25s

 

 

 

Ski Turnover Speed vs. Glide in Skiing

Q:  question concerns foot (ski?) turnover speed. As a long time runner, one of the areas I often work on is maintaining a high foot turnover, which is important whether running sprints or a marathon. I’ve read that one of the reasons Usain Bolt is as fast as he is because, even though he is relatively tall for a sprinter and therefore has a longer stride length, his turnover is the same as or better than his shorter-limbed competitors. Therefore, even though his foot speed is roughly equivalent to the competition, each stride is longer so he travels further at the same turnover rate.

How does one approach turnover speed versus glide in skiing? Is there a point where moving your feet or skis too quickly reduces ones glide length to the extent it reduces efficiency or speed?

 

A: In short, yes. There is a point where moving your skis too quickly reduces glide efficiency. This is often why coaches advise against “coming off the ski too quickly”. In essence, you want to create enough initial power immediately prior to the glide phase so that you can ride the ski with the remains of that initial impulse of energy. Executing that preliminary power phase too timidly results in a dead ski, which is often over-compensated by transferring your bodyweight over to the other ski quickly. Pretty soon you are going from foot-to-foot like a hot potato without allowing yourself to travel along on-top of the ski with minimal effort. Of course, there are times when it becomes more efficient to increase your tempo, transferring your bodyweight more rapidly, such as on a steep uphill.

On the flip side, you don’t want to over-extend your glide. Simply put, you want to avoid letting the glide of your ski become too slow before you initiate the next stride, a bit of momentum needs to remain. The trick is in the timing; after enough practice you will gain an intuitive sense for what the best turnover rate is according to terrain and conditions.

 



Don't get Frostbite!
Jan 15, 2016, 8:59 am

Don’t Get Frostbite: Racing in Cold Weather

 

Don’t Get Frostbite:

Frostbite is the biggest risk during a cold race. It can be difficult to recognize when you are moving fast and can have serious consequences. Sure, we see pictures from early Himalayan expeditions with climbers coming back short a foot or a bunch of fingers and think that could never happen during a race right? Well of course it is pretty unlikely to lose an appendage during an hour and a half long skimo race but it is still possible to do serious, long-lasting damage. Anyone who has dealt with it will be quick to tell you how much it sucks.

Cover your face - use a Buff!

Cover your face – use a Buff!  

  • Wind highly increases the odds and severity of frostbite. Pay attention to the forecast to see if wind will be a factor. In the Rockies, you can pretty much count on wind.
  • Exposed skin is most at risk. Cover it up – Buffs are awesome. Use it as a neck gator or pull it up over the back of your head like a balaclava.
  • Creams and emollients do not work. In fact, creams can actually increase the likelihood of frostbite (see the Finnish study at the bottom) and water based creams are especially bad. Use fabric or moleskin to cover your face. Moleskin patches can be cut into squares and applied on your upper cheeks or across your nose.
  • A wind vest can be incredibly useful. I love my ski suit as much as the next guy but a good fitting vest will help keep your core temperature without restricting movement or causing overheating like a full jacket might.
  • Pack extra gloves. Gloves can quickly get wet from sweat or a fall in the snow during a race. Once wet, wind can cut right though them and lots of warmth is lost through your hands. One pair of heavy duty gloves could be a finger-saver if things get really nasty on course. Mitts are also more effective than gloves.
  • Double up on long underwear and use long underwear with wind protection panels (wind briefs). Wind protection tops are also available and really awesome.
  • Carry hand warmers. More useful on a long ski tour but not a terrible thing to have just in case. Toe warmer packets can be useful if you have already damaged your toes or have poor circulation. It only works if you have room in your boot but I use a liner sock with a toe warmer stuck to the bottom then covered with a thin smartwool sock. With this setup I’ve never had to worry during a race.
  • Make sure your in-race water system is prepared for the cold. A bladder and hose will freeze at -20 no matter how insulated it is or how good you are at keeping the hose clear. A water bottle with hot liquid kept inside the ski suit, close to your body, seems to work best.

Be prepared to recognize the signs and symptoms of frostbite! It is not worth permanently damaging a toe, finger, or nose for a race. Depending on the severity, even minor frostbite can follow you for life. One bad toe can make ski touring difficult anytime it is cold.

  • If you are shivering during a race, frostbite is likely happening or already happened. Add layers, race harder, or drop out. You should be sweating not shivering.
  • White patchy skin is a sure sign of frostbite. Take a look around at the start line and during the warm up to make sure your friends cheeks are doing ok.
  • If your toes are cold on a climb but then on a descent, miraculously “warm up” and don’t hurt, frostbite is very possibly setting in. Following painful cold, frostbite causes extremities to lose feeling making it seem like you are warming back up. This is time to add clothing and check carefully for lost feeling.
  • Painful cold in your hands and fingers can be normal but if you lose dexterity (easy to notice at a transition) you may be in trouble. Change to thicker gloves!
  • Any time you have lost feeling, it is time to call it quits. Head for the nearest chalet to warm up. Keep assessing your toes, fingers, and face for feeling.

Ski Racing in the Cold – Other Factors:

Stay hydrated and well fuelled: In severe cold, extra calories are required just to function let alone race. Make sure your system is topped up on energy and not starting at a disadvantage. As race delays are common in severe cold, bring enough food to continue eating during delay periods. This could involve eating a pre-race breakfast as normal but also packing a pre-race lunch in the case of a long delay (also smart to do if avalanche control delays are possible).

 



December 2015
Dec 13, 2015, 5:45 pm

 

DECEMBER 2015

 

Your training this month. If you haven’t sought out some snow by now, it’s about time to do so. Getting on snow early is important to build up balance and stability. Additionally, if you are forced to transition back to rollerskis a few times, you’ll have that snow feeling. As far as training goes, the plan still calls for some intensity but also adds a little volume taking into account the increase in early season skiing.

Strength training. The plan remains very ski specific. It now becomes about nailing the details. To prepare for racing you want to develop some “snap” in your skiing. That means you feel a little extra spring to your step (but when skiing). This feeling can be accomplished in the gym. Make sure all of your movements this period are crisp and focused. A lethargic movement will become just that when you test it on snow. Think about being snappy in the gym and let it pay dividends on the trails



Training - week 12
Jan 26, 2015, 8:50 am

 

Your training this month. Period 12 is smack dab in the middle of the racing season. Some athletes will become tired at times, that is certainly allowed. Make sure to acknowledge that and account for it. Each athlete is responsible for “tweaking” their own training plan. If you are tired, take an extra day off or just ski easy. If you are feeling good, pay attention to the small things and really get in quality training. Racing takes center stage so make sure your body is ready for whatever demands are expected of it.

Strength training. Strength becomes secondary this time of the season to racing and ski training. Don’t overdo it in the gym. Make sure your muscles get a good workout, then get out of there! The worst thing you can do is to get really sore then have your skiing suffer as a result. Focus on ski specific movements.

 

What makes a good post exercise food?

Label Information Snack Bars Post Exercise Bars
Carbohydrate 15-30g 30-100g
Protein <6g 6-20g (0.1-0.2g/kg BW)

 

**10-20g will provide amino acids to help muscle recovery

  • Note – Watch the fat content 3-4g is OK
  • Post Exercise Food Choices
Quick & Easy Sport Bars Beverage/Drinks Other Foods
Powerbar Recovery Milk based fruit smoothie Low fat yogurt with granola
Cliff bar Low fat chocolate milk Lean meat sandwich
Luna Sunrise bar Carnation instant breakfast Peanut butter and jelly sandwich
Gatorade energy bar Boost Fruit with Nut butter
Kashi Go-Lean bar Ensure Cottage Cheese with fruit
First Endurance Bar Endurox R4 Single Serve tuna packets with crackers
EFS Sports Bar Mix 1 Fruit Salad with yogurt
Erin Baker’s Breakfast Cookie Powerbar Recovery drink Bowl of cereal with skim milk
GeniSoy bar Chocolate Soy Milk Trail mix with piece of fruit
Powerbar Performance bar Ultragen (by First Endurance) String cheese with a piece of fruit
    Veggie burger on pita bread


Dec 6, 2013, 9:50 am

Seasonal Nutrition Focus: Not Getting Sick During Peak Season

December 4, 2013 By Georgie Fear

The following is brought to you by professional nutrition coach Georgie Fear, a Registered Dietitian and former rower, marathoner and ultrarunner, who recently co-authored the Racing Weight Cookbook. For more on Fear and her nutrition tips and recipes, visit askgeorgie.com.

***

In the fall, training volume for winter athletes is generally at its highest. As the season approaches, athletes want to be strong, fast, and lean, and putting in the hours to train is essential. It’s also critical for good nutrition to be a part of your routine, so that you can ward off illness. After all, getting sick can cost an athlete days or even weeks of critical workouts, and competing while fighting a bug is unlikely to lead to your best performance.

Should you load up on Vitamin C? Drink gallon of echinacea tea? How can you give yourself the best odds of fighting off infections this winter?

Read on for evidence-based nutrition tips to keep your immune system as strong as can be while you hit your peak training volume and performance.

Carbohydrates During Training

Intense and high-volume exercise is known to result in immune system suppression. Training stimulates the release of cortisol and other stress hormones, which decrease the synthesis of immunoglobulins and the proliferation of white blood cells. Consuming carbohydrates while training dampens the rise in cortisol and other stress hormones associated with intense exercise. It also appears to limit exercise-induced immune suppression.

To keep your immune working full-throttle while you’re training hard, consume 30-60 grams of carbohydrate per hour while training, instead of waiting until after your workout to begin refueling.

Consume Enough Protein and Calories

Diets which are too low in protein have been shown to impair immunity by decreasing phagocyte and T-cell function. There is evidence that hard-training athletes should consume at least 15% calories from protein to maintain immune function. Rather than breaking out a calculator to ensure that you get enough, a foolproof way is to include at least one high-protein food each time you eat, such as eggs, meat, poultry, seafood, protein powder, cheese, yogurt, soy, or beans.

When training volume is high, it becomes a challenge for some athletes to eat enough calories, making them more vulnerable to glycogen depletion, overtraining syndrome, hormone disturbances and immunosuppression. Liquid calories can help boost total energy intake, and increasing carbohydrate intake before, during and after training sessions can help maintain intramuscular glycogen.

Vitamins and Minerals

Many vitamins and minerals play a role in keeping your immune system strong. Vitamin B12 (found in beef, turkey and seafood), and folic acid (found in spinach and avocado) are needed for the synthesis of red and white blood cells. Deficiencies in copper, selenium, or iron weaken the immune system by impairing macrophage production, natural killer cell activity, and antibody formation. Whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds are rich in vitamins and minerals, and make excellent staples to add into your meals. If you need some meal ideas, there’s more than 100 dietitian developed and athlete-approved recipes in the Racing Weight Cookbook.

What About Supplements?

If I could make only one supplement recommendation to winter athletes to stay healthy, it would be to supplement vitamin D, especially in the winter months. The amount of circulating vitamin D in an athlete’s blood correlates not only with the number of times they get sick each year but also with symptom severity and duration of illness. In other words, getting enough vitamin D benefits you three ways: you’re less likely to get sick, and if you do get a cold, it’s milder and shorter-lived.

Vitamin D is very sparse in natural food sources, and even in countries where milk is fortified with vitamin D it is at a low enough level that sub-optimal vitamin D intake remains widespread. Very little of this vitamin is diet-derived; almost all of the vitamin D in the human body is synthesized in the skin in response to UV exposure.  For those in warm, tropical climates where the sun shines abundantly, synthesizing vitamin D year-round is no problem, but for much of the year it is impossible to synthesize ANY vitamin D north of 35 degrees latitude, due to the angle of the sun’s rays. That means across most of the United States and all of Canada, you couldn’t synthesize enough vitamin D even if you trained outdoors every day naked (though it might make your social life interesting). So taking a vitamin D supplement of at least 2,000 IU (International units) and up to 5,000 IU is paramount during the winter.

Supplementing with Vitamins C and E has been shown in some studies to reduce the incidence of upper respiratory tract infections in athletes, but other trials have observed no effect, so the evidence is not clear if supplementing these nutrients is definitively worth it. It’s unlikely to do any harm however.

Dietary zinc plays an important role in thymic function, lymphocyte development, and resistance to infections. Inadequate dietary zinc lessens immunity, but excessive zinc intake (as found in high dose supplements) also damages the immune system. Thus, mega-doses of zinc are not recommended. Research supports supplementing 10-20 mg per day of zinc, especially for vegetarians, who naturally consume less zinc. (For reference, the megadoses which negatively impacted the immune system were more than ten times this amount, totaling 300 mg per day).

Most of the athletes I work with choose to take a multivitamin in addition to choosing a varied diet based on whole, nutrient rich foods. This can be a good way to make sure that your vitamin and mineral bases are covered, but is by no means license to ignore your food intake. Whole, unprocessed foods are still the cornerstone of a high performance diet. Rumor has it that traveling on the World Cup circuit means that fresh vegetables are hard to come by in some places, but if you have a daily multivitamin on hand, at least you know most of your micronutrient needs will be met.

What to Do

In summary, to avoid immune system suppression associated with peak training volume:

  • Drink a carbohydrate-containing beverage during all intense workouts, aiming for 30-60 grams of carbohydrate per hour of exercise.

  • Follow up training with a recovery meal as soon as possible, containing a 3:1 or 4:1 ratio of carbohydrates to protein.

  • Eat nutrient rich foods such as whole grains, lean proteins, nuts and seeds, and a colorful array of vegetables and fruit.

  • Eat enough to maintain your weight, and include a protein-rich food at each meal

  • Take a multivitamin providing about 100% of the recommended daily intake of vitamins and minerals, and supplement with additional Vitamin D during the winter months (2000-5000 IU per day).

  • Check out the Racing Weight Cookbook for delicious recipes and more guidance on getting enough carbohydrates, proteins and nutrients for optimal performance and body composition.

    ***

    Georgie Fear is a professional nutrition coach whose advice is sought after by athletes ranging from NCAA standouts to Olympic gold medalists. A Registered Dietitian and former rower, marathoner and ultrarunner, Georgie has been helping clients get leaner, healthier and faster since 2005. Her writing and recipes appear at www.AskGeorgie.com