Best Summer EVER

Best Summer EVER!!!

Usually I slack on blogs in the summer because I’m busy actually DOING things! Unlike during the race season when I have hours upon hours to kill after training or racing on the road. And sorry, but I’d much rather be out having fun and adventures than writing a blog. BUT, here goes.

The past few weeks have literally been the best summer I have ever had in Alaska. After a rough start to the summer with some late (May 18!) snowfall, it has surely but steadily gotten better and better, warmer and warmer, sunnier and sunnier. I could not be happier. Today it was in the mid-80s, which is basically unheard of in Anchorage. It’s amazing, especially when it’s sunny (and I’m talking really sunny, not just light) until 11pm here in the Land of the Midnight Sun. I don’t have to think about taking a jacket with me when I leave the house, the girls sit in the sun and stretch, talk and sunbathe after training sessions, I actually got to dig out all the summery clothes that I never get to wear. Sadie, Rosie and I went swimming in a creek at 9pm tonight and it was still 80F! And best of all, I’ve gotten a great TAN so far (don’t worry Mom, I still wear sunscreen!) which is something I don’t think I have achieved in Alaska since I was in high school. It makes getting up early for training that much more motivating, and it makes training that much more fun because you get a good sweat going, you feel like you’re working hard, and your energy levels are just sky-high from all the Vitamin D you soak up with 18 hours of sunlight. Needless to say, I’m loving it!!

20130617-222046.jpgFor realz. And that’s 9PM.

20130617-222103.jpgRosie and I enjoying the cold of Campbell Creek at 80F.

20130617-222112.jpgCan’t get much better than this.

Other than enjoying the beautiful weather, I’ve been working a bit and training a lot, and even thrown in a few running races in the mix. Next week is our first glacier camp!

I’m determined to make this summer count for everything, and do everything I can to ski faster than I ever have next year. Because let’s be real, next winter are the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, and damn if I don’t want to be there. If I said I didn’t, it would be a huge HUGE lie and I’d be doing a disservice not only to myself and my goals and dreams, but also to everyone who has helped me get to where I am already. I’ve had a lot of support from my family, my friends, my coaches, my teammates, and my sponsors, and I owe it to them to go after my life dream as much as I do myself. Yes, It’s going to take a lot of hard work, hard training, mental endurance and determination  body care and adequate recovery, but in the end, I want to come away from next season knowing that I did everything in my power to try and achieve my goals, whether I make to Russia in February or not. There aren’t going to be any “what if’s?” And I’m not afraid to say what my goals are now. I’m over being modest or humble, I WANT TO MAKE THE OLYMPICS. One of my teammates said once that it’s important to put your goals out there for everyone to see and know, no matter how far away or hard to reach they might be because then you’re held accountable to them. It’s not a secret dream where no one will know or care whether I achieve it or not. I’ve made it know what my goal is, and in a lot of ways, that makes it easier to stay motivated and focused on making every step of the way count. I recently read an article written by one of the best female triathletes in the world, Chrissy Wellington, who laid out “Ten Ways To Act Like A Champion” and basically reaffirmed many things I have just said.

1. Champions remember that success is a decision, not a gift.
2. Champions document and communicate their goals.
3. Champions make choices.
4. Champions have a plan.
5. Champions tackle their weaknesses and strengths.
6. Champions lean on others.
7. Champions accept change.
8. Champions prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
9. Champions keep things in perspective.
10. Champions stay positive.

It’s a great article and worth the read. With that said, I’ll leave you with some photos from the summer/spring so far.

bird-ridge-tongueoutTaking a moment to enjoy it while racing Bird Ridge in the blazing sun last Sunday. (Photo Rhianne Christopherson)

AKRFW-ravenettesKudos to my co-working Ravens to kill it at the Alaska Run for Women.

AKRFW-tongueoutAgain, trying to lighten the mood by sticking out my tongue. It’s a bad habit… (photo Ryan Beckett)

RabbitCrk-bailoutStill smiling after having to bail into the grass/dirt after coming down a blind corner on my rollerskis to find a river flooding across the road!! (photo Sarah Cresap)

IMG_9509I spy some baby moose! These twins were literally just born when I saw them in the neighbor’s yard in May.

IMG_9512Barely able to walk!

IMG_9523An amazing alpenglow sunset in May with a full moon.

Hatcher-skiStill got some great skiing in the mountains until the end of May !

Hatcher's-klister-jobEven if it required a klister-on-the-go/exploding-klister-tube job.

may-blizzard-skiMay 18th blizzard. Skiing up and down my road! Actually got a great workout!

GNT-finishFollowed up the next day by a triathlon in 35F! May 19, 2013. (Photo Patrice Parker)

IMG_9264In April we had some amazing sun as well, and I took advantage of some snowy hikes.

IMG_9201Early spring beach time!

IMG_9165I dragged a certain Aussie up here for a week in April. Pretty sure he likes AK better than AUS…

IMG_0289Because he was pretty excited to see his first moose!

IMG_9091Had some quality hikes with my mom.

IMG_9488I also got to spend a week up in the Northwest Arctic region of Alaska in an Inupiaq village of Selawik skiing with kids with the NANANordic program. It was a total blast and an incredible experience that I will never forget and hope to do again next spring. I have more photos in this album and you can learn more about the program here.

Also, I said in my last post a few months ago that I would post photos from Spring Series in Truckee, so here they are. All photos are from Mark Nadall/Macbeth Graphics. Thanks for the great photos!

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