Winter is in full swing in central Europe and I haven’t touched my bike for many weeks. Lots of my cycling colleagues complain about the weather but I really like it. Its perfect for skiing and I have done quite a lot of miles on my cross country skis. I believe that it will make me stronger in cycling, too. Too much cycling is not good, its always the same stimulus and your system doesn’t know how to cope with it. A change is needed from time to time and that is why I only ski in winter, no bike for at least 4 months.
Cross Country Skiing is very similar to mountain biking, just as intense, and in addition, I ski on the same trails that I ride my bike on in summer over here.
To not lose the habit of competing, I take part in some races, my first race was this weekend, a 5 km freestyle individual start in Titisee. It was a great event, a real grass root happening! The day started with all the kids an junior classes, great to see the 8 to 10 year old girls and boys over 2 km! They are the future of the sport and I remember my first race very well in 1980! I asked my mother to run behind me because I was scared to take the wrong way. I was so shy that I didn’t want to go to collect my prize and asked my brother to get it. I still got the silver spoon that I won that day in a special place… Later in the day, the elite class was on the line and 5km is such a hard distance! Its about 13 minutes at the absolute maximum. What made the situation even harder was the track that was super icy, you could probably have used ice skates instead of skis. Especially the downhills were very tricky.
After the race and during the next days, we took advantage of the good conditions and the weather and skied large tours on the tracks from village to village. A lot of my summer cycling training buddies were with me and it was just like a group ride on the bike, just on skis!
Next up will be some more training in the snow and some races in France and in Italy!