It’s May 2nd. Do you know where your motivational training-themed hashtag is?
The recently completed Olympiad brought us #boulevardtoBeijing, which was in turn preceded by the admittedly vastly more popular #pathtoPyeongchang. I’m far too old to attempt to make #trailtoTrondheim start trending; indeed, it appears that not a single post currently on Instagram uses that specific hashtag, which should tell you all you need to know about my capacity to limn the zeitgeist. (Shockingly, #limnthezeitgeist also does not appear on a single post anywhere on Instagram.)
Anyway. It is May 2nd. The opening races of the 2023/2024 World Cup will be held less than seven months from now, and 2025 World Championships, in Trondheim, Norway, in less than two years. Some World Cup races will, notably, be held in this country at some point in the interim, specifically in February 2024.
Skiers are, in most cases, resuming formal training again, though some noteworthy exceptions are also surveyed at the bottom of this article. And if they were already back to codified training last week? Well, that great arbiter of nordic skiing propriety, the unknown creative force behind the now largely silent @crosscountryskimemes, had some thoughts on this several years ago:
Please enjoy this deeply unscientific roundup of training posts and Strava uploads from the start of this training year, organized in very rough geographic order from west to east.
Garrett Butts and other APU athletes: Still training on the last gasps of sea-level grooming in Anchorage (much love for NSAA, the local ski club that has been grooming for slightly over six months now and has extended the local ski season longer than logic would dictate possible, but, full disclosure, much of in-town skiing looks… somewhat muddier than this at present, and we’re likely down to the final day or two of Anchorage skiing. NSAA has done great work, but like it or not spring is finally here.)
Also APU, also at sea level: Skiing in Girdwood earlier today
Scott Patterson: Crust skiing in the Chugach front range outside of Anchorage
JC Schoonmaker: Springtime adventuring, then back on snow in Tahoe:
Finn O’Connell: Road biking in Montana
Sophia Laukli: A lowkey 2.5-hour trail run outside of Salt Lake City on May 1, reflecting the fact that Laukli is also a decorated trail runner sponsored by Salomon, followed by a 2.5-hour rollerski earlier today
Jessie Diggins: Rollerskiing back on home turf in Afton; throwing out the first pitch at Sunday’s Twins game
(Diggins also participated in a press conference at Wirth Park for the Loppet Cup, the two World Cup races to be held in Minneapolis next February; coverage of that will be up on this site later this week)
Zak Ketterson: Running and rollerskiing in the Twin Cities
John Steel Hagenbuch: Road bike racing in Hanover
Lauren Jortberg: Jogging in Tampa
[I promise I’m not trying to ignore or slight New England here… I surveyed all of Ben Ogden, Julia Kern, SMS, Bates Nordic, Bowdoin Nordic, Haley Brewster, Flying Point Road, Dartmouth Skiing, and UVM Skiing, and didn’t find anything recent on Instagram commemorating the start of the training year from any of these accounts. No I know that’s not every New England skier or ski organization, but that is a fair amount of them. Steel Hagenbuch racing road bikes and Jortberg running in Florida will have to do. Sorry.]
And moving over to Europe:
Norwegian biathlete Vetle Sjåstad Christiansen: Still skiing in Oslo
Lotta Udnes Weng: 2-hour run in Lillehammer
Pål Golberg: 1-hour run, 1-hour bike (I would hazard a guess that this is not the entirety of Golberg’s training over the last two days)
Anne Kjersti Kalvå: Strength
Okay, that’s a lot of training. For those of you still feeling a little less ambitious, let’s check in with one Johannes Høsflot Klæbo, currently visiting his girlfriend someplace warm and sunny:
And Julia Kern (Kern has, per Instagram, been vacationing in Rome, and is now en route to Croatia to attend FIS meetings in her role as an athlete rep):
And finally, let’s hear from a profoundly relaxed JC Schoonmaker, filmed at a Mexican beach resort last week, on the importance of listening to your body and only doing what you want to at this point in the season.
Happy training, whatever form that may take for you.
— Gavin Kentch