I just completed our first training camp of the season in Bend, Oregon. It felt great to get back in the full swing of training after a nice period of recovery. I always enjoy our off time at the end of the season but I always feel best when I am back training.
This was my third trip to Bend at this time of year and it was by far the best snow conditions that I have seen there. Bend is a very unique place in that that actual town receives almost no snow, yet by driving 15 minutes up the mountain, you are in full winter. It was crazy to be skiing on over 4 feet of snow in the morning and then run in shorts and a t-shirt in the afternoons. This unique combination is what makes this camp so special. We also use this opportunity to do a lot of ski testing for the next season because we will only have one more chance to be on snow this summer.
I am now back in Lake Placid for the majority of the summer. After so many years filled with travel, I am planning on spending a little more time training at home this summer. I have great facilities for training here and it will be so nice to put the suitcase away for a few months!
Before Bend, I used most of April as both a physical and mental break from my training and racing routine. This is a little longer than I normally take after a season, but I felt I needed this break after the long Olympic season. The Olympics were quite tough on me this year. It was a challenge for me to accept getting derailed in Sochi with sickness after so much preparation.
After having more time to reflect on Sochi, I have realized that other people deal with much worse problems and I should feel lucky if this all I have to complain about! In the end, this experience has really motivated me to get back into the full swing of training and do everything I can to improve. I can only control the aspects of competition that are within my control and that is what I will put my energy towards.
The most exciting news from my off-season is that I got engaged to my girlfriend of six years. This happened on our vacation in the Virgin Islands. We are both incredibly excited to start this new chapter of our lives together!
Thanks for all of the continued support! I hope that my box of Olympic goodies made it to the office!