My first day here in the "Official Hometown of Santa" has been most excellent. I slept great last night, got a full 9 hours, woke up at 8AM, jogged, went to breakfast, and got out for my first classic ski with the group. The 5k track is made of snow saved from last spring and the temp was 0 Celcius, so we were kicking on red klister. Coach Will had a us all doing some striding drills with one and no poles, which was a great way to get used to being on snow again. My favorite, which was new to me, was a German drill where you no pole stride with your hands above your head. I'll have to experiment with that one some more.
This afternoon we were in the gym for strength. According to some Japanese coaches Will once met, strength will stimulate the release of HGH (human growth hormone), which is supposed to help you sleep at night. I'll let you know if that works. While we were in the gym, we saw people around the athletic complex practicing nearly every other sport imaginable: track, weight lifting, volleyball, floorball, gymnastics, judo. Needless to say, it is a very cool facility.
The accommodations here at Santa Sport are awesome. We are in a duplex cabin half a kilometer away from the ski track and main building where the cafeteria, gym, and a number of other facilities are, so we just walk everywhere. Our cabins are totally dialed for athletes. My favorite features are the saunas and the drying cabinet, where you hang up your wet jacket, gloves, and whatever else from training, and its warm and dry by your next session. The sauna is sweet, because all you do is pop the lid on the heater, and the whole thing is steaming hot in 10 minutes.
Kicking on red klister. Some Big Green representation here (4 of the 9 on the trip are alums or current Dartmouth students)
The beginning of snow track. They saved this snow from last year in a parking lot under sawdust and wood chips to make this 5k track.
The gym at Santa Sport
Floorball practice. In my country it's called floor hockey, and it's for elementary school gym class, but here it's a legit sport.
The food here is great so far. Potatoes with every meal and lots of veggies.
The gang's all here: Nick Michaud, Glenn Randall, Mike Lessard, Sam Tarling, Fred Bailey, Coach Will Sweetser, and Adele Espy (not pictured Leif Zimmerman).