I have been in Ostersund, Sweden preparing for the start of the World Cup for a little over two weeks now. Despite the unseasonably warm temperatures, the skiing has been good enough to log some quality training. The Swedes are definitely pros with track preparation for early season skiing. They have prepared the tracks with snow they saved from last winter because the temperatures have been far too warm for snowmaking.
My training for the first week went very well and I felt like my body was recovering nicely from some of the big hours I put in this fall. Unfortunately, I came down with a cold on Thursday and was forced to take a few days off. I am already feeling a lot better and am back to some light training. I was disappointed to miss a few hard training sessions so close to the start of the World Cup but hopefully a solid summer and fall of training will make up for this.
We finally received some unexpected snow today that added up to about 5 inches. It was not enough for the venue to open any additional trails but at least it looks a little more like winter over here now. It was weird to skiing on the tracks next to green grass for the past two weeks.
Once again I had a rather uneventful Thanksgiving. It seems the Swedes are not very into celebrating Thanksgiving for some reason… It was slightly painful to video chat with family back home as they were fixing up Turkey and endless pies while I was forced to stick with the traditional Swedish cuisine of fish and boiled potatoes. Speaking of potatoes, last year I kept a count of how many potatoes I ate while I was in Sweden for three weeks. This year I decided to call it quits after I reached seven in the first two days. It was simply too depressing knowing that I had at least another 30 or 40 to go.
Despite my cold, I am looking forward to getting things started here with the first World Cup on Wednesday. It is definitely a long season but I am hoping to get things started on the right foot here next week!