Monday, June 29, 2009

Vitamin D! You can't get enough!

Check out one of the new research areas UW is embarking upon. It's of vital importance to you as athletes and people so be sure to read it and get a good supplement for next winter!

http://www.uwyo.edu/news/showrelease.asp?id=32563&from=newssend

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Summer Training!

We have started our summer training group here in Laramie. So far there are 15 people who come on and off. It's going great and it fun to have a group to train with during the summer.

If you are interested in joining us and are in the Laramie area just shoot an email to uwski@yahoo.com and we'll add you to the summer training group.

If you aren't around be sure to check the training schedules at: http://www.uwyo.edu/ski/training.htm

Be safe & we'll see you there!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Sad News...

It is a sad day for nordic skiing.

I just got word that Willie Neal, whom many of you know and skied with, was killed by a car while rollerskiing on Sunday.

The article is here: http://fasterskier.com/2009/06/jackson-wy-biathlete-willie-neal-killed-in-roller-skiing-accident/

My sincere sympathy to all of you who knew Willie and for US Nordic Skiing.

He will be missed...

Monday, June 15, 2009

USCSA BOD Meeting, Albany, NY

A few words describe Albany, NY. Humid, old, deciduous, and rainy. I arrived at the Marriott Hotel with a distinct feeling of clamminess on my face. A long day of catching planes, eating airport cuisine, and interacting with people I really didn't want to (the self-proclaimed computer geek next to me on my flight into Charlotte, NC) left me feeling ready to relax in my room. I ate dinner by myself in the hotel restaurant (a first for me and not as bad as I had thought). A cute waiter attended to me. Sorry Brian. Christi would not be arriving until the next morning so I checked out the HBO schedule and found to my delight that Baby Mama was playing! I fell asleep to dreams of Tina Fey and Amy Phoeler dancing in my head. 
The next morning I was decidedly nervous about what was to go down. Christi was already delayed in her quest to Albany so I knew I was going to be alone for part of the morning. After a delicious breakfast and meeting many North-easterners (including a guy who spoke just like the announcer in Maine!) we convened in the conference room with water bottles and candy dishes abounding. We began with a couple presentations, one dealing with sexual harassment (don't worry team, I now know the rules) and the other with coaching. This is about when I first realized that the majority of this meeting would deal with Alpine skiing because he began by asking who in the room deals with alpine skiing and nearly every hand went up. The guy giving the presentation had been one of the US Alpine women's coaches for the past season and it would have been very interesting had I known how to apply it at all to Nordic. 
Then began the committee meetings. Christi arrived just in time for a delayed start to the Nordic meeting. We decided to continue the night sprint because of the positive response from both Nordic, snowboard AND alpine skiers! We will decide whether to hold the sprints at the downhill area where the lighting is better or at Black Mountain (where the Nordic races are held) once Nationals begins. One of the hot topics for the entire meeting was how to hold awards. Most athletes are all for holding separate discipline awards (Nordic skiers have their own awards at Black Mountain, Alpiners have theirs at Sunday River, thus eliminating the long drive for us). That is still to be decided. That was the majority of what we talked about. (feel free to ask me if there are any other questions about this). Now for the fun stuff!
Christi and I went downtown on Friday night--no one else wanted to adventure out. We saw the huge capitol building and a church that was built in 1714. That is OLD! We also noted how different the east in that there are SO MANY TREES that don't allow you to be able to see anything around you! It was a claustrophobic, suffocating feeling! I also rode in a taxi for the first time in the US. That was fun. The next night, we went to a mall close by and ate at a fondue restaurant called The Melting Pot. It was the best! Next we saw Night at the Museum 2 on IMAX. 
The next morning, I heard Christi silently leave the room to catch her taxi to the airport since her plane left an hour before mine. I had set my alarm for 5:20 and figured I had about twenty more minutes of shut eye. Well, I began a dream that involved me being the hero on some sort of treasure hunt game, and I was interrupted by my cell phone ringing. Through my foggy brain came the realization that I shouldn't be hearing that particular ring because it wasn't my alarm tone. It was also too light in my room to be 5:20. It was my mother calling, at 7:30 asking if I had made it to Chicago. Of course, I hadn't made it to Chicago, I was sleeping peacefully in Albany while my plane left me. I flew out of bed in a panic yelling a few bad bad words along the way. Throwing my belongings into my bags and not even brushing my hair, I got a shuttle to the airport and worked everything out so I made it to Salt Lake only a few hours later than I should have. 
Thanks Christi for the wonderful time in New York and to the BOD for teaching me about Roger's Rules. It was a great weekend!

University of Wyoming Dean's and Freshman Honor Rolls -- Non-Resident

Congrats to Liz, Cara & Erin O. for making the Dean's and Freshman Honor Rolls - Non-Resident.

You make us proud!

Check out the full list at: http://www.uwyo.edu/news/showrelease.asp?id=32002&from=newssend

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Thanks so much!!

Just a short note to thank everyone for all the help you gave us at the UW Ski Camp!! It is our privilege and pleasure to be associated with such talented and outstanding young men and women! We couldn't have done it without you. A special thanks to Ashley who was there with us before 6 AM until 9 PM. You were amazing. Of course there were so many others who spent hours in the kitchen with us - we can't thank you enough! As Christi and Rachel would say, "You rock our world!!"

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Is This Heaven?

Today was the end of the 2009 UW Nordic Summer Ski Camp. The Summer Camp is put on by the UW Nordic Ski Team for high school skiers. This year at camp we had 30 high school athletes, 10 college athletes, 7 coaches and 2 Heroes who some people call Dick and Evelyn.

Reunions and introductions filled the first day of camp. As the drive to camp is no simple task even from Laramie, there was no workout planned on Saturday. However, there was an amazing dinner prepared by Dick and Evelyn with help from Ashley and others. Following dinner, Rachel and Christi gave a lecture over training. For a bedtime story time, I played a stick figure movie I made about Junior Olympics 2006 for anyone who wanted to watch. I hope everyone wasn't bored to tears! After the movie, lights went out in the lodge and we all headed up to our cabins for a chilly heatless night in the mountains.

The main attraction of the camp is skiing the crust at Libby Flats. Libby Flats is a place located in the Snowy Range west of Laramie. At 10,800 feet, the snow doesn't melt completely until mid to late July. Sunday morning wasn't a particularly cold day. Unfortunetly, the snow had crusted over with many pot holes. It made skiing difficult and there were a great many painful falls. Surpassing adversity, everyone generally had a good time and as far as I know, there was no broken equipment on Sunday. We even managed to get in a technique lesson. We returned from skiing to a warm breakfast prepared once again at the hands of my heroes. Following breakfast we had a discussion about skiing in college and a Yoga session lead by Gracie. It was raining so we had to do it in the lodge. Not everyone could see Gracie but it didn't matter, we all twisted and stretched in ways we never thought possible! After a delicious lunch we headed out on a long slow distance run. For the people running with me, or near me, it was a fun run marked by rapping and joking. As far as I know, everyone had a fairly enjoyable run in the Wyoming weather. When we began our run, it was sunny and warm. The saying "If you don't like the weather in Wyoming, wait 15 minutes" could not have been more true. A few minutes into the run, it started to rain, rain turned to snow, snow turned to sun and then the end of the run was sunny. And just for the record, Gracie never dropped her key into the bog, we just wanted to run a little more. We returned to camp and a wonderful dinner. We went to bed in a rain storm.

Monday morning was another day of skiing. We always hope for a beautiful crust but it doesn't always work out that way. The night brought two or three inches of fresh snow. Without sun, the new snow didn't turn to crust. Did that stop us? Never! We all put on our skis in the frigid wind. The main course of skiing on Monday was a little game taught to me by a Russian. Zhyena taught me how to play a game which we quickly dubbed "Russian Biathlon." I taught everyone how to play Russian Biathlon. We had a great time playing a great game. Monday wasn't as nice to us as Sunday. We broke two skis. However, there was a noticeable lack of pot holes so that made things a little easier. To comfort our pain, a comforting breakfast was served after our ski! A short talk about training logs was followed by a strength circuit. It was raining so we held it inside. After our circuit we ate another amazing lunch. After lunch we ran natural intervals. It could be said, we didn't need showers after that run. It poured on us. At 8,500 feet, rain in June is not warm. It was a cold day of intervals but true to their nature, our athletes did very well. Unfortunately, we suffered our first injury on the rocky trials. Kyle rolled his ankle. A cold run is best remedied with a warm meal, and we weren't disappointed. After dinner, Angela formerly of the Wellness Center at UW gave a wonderfully informative speech on injuries and injury prevention. At this point, it had been raining all day which meant it was snowing all day up on top. Coaches gave us a choice, to sleep in or to try and ski even though the skiing might be horrible. Almost unanimously, they voted to get up and try even if it meant a hard day on snow. There's just something about Nordic skiers isn't there? Monday night was the last night of camp and that could only mean one thing. Dance Party!

When the trumpet sounded off on Tuesday morning, it was hard for most everyone to get out of bed but we did it and we made it up the hill. At the top, we were met by a few inches of new snow but it turned out to be the best skiing conditions yet! Though of course, the wind was blowing like crazy. It was a windy cold ski but totally worth every second of being on snow in June. We posed for a picture on the castle lookout tower. When we returned to camp, the most amazing thing happened. We got to eat Evelyn's cinnamon rolls! I truly do not think I’ve eaten a better tasting breakfast in my life. Next up was the team's competition. We competed in a series of relays and games such as a three legged race, an egg toss, an egg carry and other fun relays. At the end, the victors got first pick in their clean up duties. As the teams competition came to a close, parents started to arrive. We ate lunch with a few parents and then started to clean up camp. After camp was clean we all left never to forget the great time we had at Summer Ski Camp!

If I had to sum up ski camp in a five words they would be; Rain, Snow, Fun, Friendship and Delicious. So to answer my question, is this heaven? No, it’s Wyoming!

P.S. I would really like to thank Dick and Evelyn for everything they do for us at Ski Camp, without them none of this would be possible.