And there they go. The pungent green larch needles of summer in Graubünden are giving way to the golden yellows of fall. A beautiful time of year and clearly the distractions have gotten the better of me as September and October have fallen off the blogging train completely. That same train saw me to various training camps throughout September and October in Bex VD, Andermatt UR, Magglingen BE and most recently to Banff, Alberta, Canada!
The larches here in Switzerland differ to those in the Canadian Rockies as does the fall season itself. The European larches grow at lower elevations and the golden lights stay lit well into November. The intense gold of the Alpine larch species in Canada, on the other hand/land, eluded me this year as I missed their captivating show. With the changing colours comes a change in training priorities. September was relatively intense in terms of the amount of times my heart beat and ground covered. Although endurance athletes never stray too far from general base training, my priorities in September were based around intensity training block in Bex and Andermatt.
That said, the Swiss team was treated to a day of 'alternative' training as we were guided up the Miroir d'Argentine in the region of Bex. The climbing tour was organised by the local Bexstreetboys Erwan Käser and Jovian Hediger, as well as Daniel Hediger. It was such a treat to experience this 14 pitch climb, albeit a different form of challenging training.
We used the three race days of the Nordic Weekend in Andermatt to put the finishing touches of the intensity block that started in Bex. Although my 7th place overall finish doesn't sound glamorous, I'm pleased that all of my times throughout three events (3.3km Skate Rollerski Prologue, 4km Uphill Classic Rollerski and 4.5km Uphill Run) were faster than this time last year.
All results can be found here
After Nordic Weekend was completed, the plan was for me to join the others for a testing block in Magglingen. My body had other plans and I came down with a cold and stayed inside for most of the week watching Harry Potter. I just always recover best when watching or reading JK Rowling creations ;)
I joined the team in Magglingen but didn't complete the testing block as coming off of a cold and jumping on a treadmill would be a waste of everyone's time. Instead, we used the treadmill booked times to work on some technique and I was back to 100% healthy by the end of the week to join the girls for a track intensity! That would be my sendoff workout to go to Canada for a long awaited visit.
After 5 months of not seeing my family, I was more than elated to touch down in Calgary and meet my boyfriend. I am incredibly lucky to have someone who loves me through all the distance as well as a family that supports my dreams. There will never be enough time to spend with those you love, but my time spent in the Bow Valley means so much to me and will fuel me throughout the winter. My sister and brother-in-law brought newest edition to our family, Evia, into the world and she was among the many highlights of my visit. Babies seem to put a lot into perspective. Evia reminded me of how precious life is and showed me how one can be pooping while simultaneously being the cutest peanut ever.
Which brings us to the here and now of the preserved artificial snow in Flüelatal being spread over an expected 4km loop. I will be headed to Magglingen next week to spin on the treadmill for the fitness tests including a skate incremental, double pole test and VO2 max test. December marks the start of racing, and the pre season excitement, gear preparation and fine tuning are all part of the changing in season!