cross country ski training page 1

My Cross Country Ski Training
Summer Training
Week 13 (End of July)

My new Altras in the clover

This series shares my cross country ski training activities, and this is my log for Week 13 of this training year. This is the first week of a new 4-week block of summer training for cross country ski racing. Since most "first weeks" start off with the lowest volume of the 4-week block, I am happy to be entering this low volume week, since I am recovering from last week's race.

What's new? Intensity and Plyometrics. I'll be entering the heart rate zone of Level 4 in my twice-weekly intervals from now on, as opposed to limiting my efforts to Level 3, which is more like a marathon "couple of hours or three" type of race pacing. It's super fun to get going as fast as I can go! But, there will still be plenty of Level 3, since that's the pace that builds race endurance, and about 80 percent of my hours are still Level 1 long easy distance training. Additionally, my strength workouts will now include plyometrics and quickly moving the weights, in order to build the snappiness needed for racing. (Look for a completely new strength workout next week.) And, of course the volume of hours per week continue to increase, with every week having a couple more hours than the last. In fact, this is the highest volume block of the year, with a total of 51 hours for the 4 weeks. That's a lot of training, and I always look forward to all the fun in the sun! (About the photo: I love my new Altra Timp trail running shoes! Really!)

If you tuned into this series just now, and want to know what it's about, click here to go to the start. It's for those who are curious about the kind of training cross country ski racers enjoy doing to get ready for winter fun at Lake Tahoe and beyond.

To see prior training weeks, just scroll down and use the navigation buttons.

So let's check out Week 13...

Week 13 AM/PM Mode 1st of a 4-Week Block: Goal hrs. 8:45 of 51 hr. 4-Week Block (Highest Volume 4-Week Block of the Year) Hours
Mon AM
OFF - recover from last week's race - no intensity until feel great again

Tue AM Run Trail Run and Kayak morning. Ez still not recovered. 1:00

PM KYK L1 kayaking 0:45
Wed AM RdB Intensity Tempo Day: working toward a 30min road cycling race. Warmup 20min. 4x20sec accels fast legs, 3minL2, 3minL3, then 3x10min L3/2.5 min L1, SLOW DOWN FOR ROAD CROSSINGS THEN SPRINT OUT OF THEM Don't stay in L4 but low L4 OK, cooldown L1 but rode up our hill so can't avoid higher H.R. There. (2 weeks ago I did 3x15min but I am still recovering from the race last Sunday) 1:30

PM WT RM Strength: warmup w. the hoppy plyos, do core & arms (less legs) w. lots of triceps & weight 15 lb. 1minON/30secOFF for
1.Short step hop running R-L-R-L;
2.Hop scotch out out in in hopping L-R in, L-R out;
3.Hop scotch both feet in, both feet straddle;
4.Sideways hopping scissor legs going R then L;
5.Tricep dips on bench (rock);
6.Full then partial pullups top, bottom and middle;
7.High pulldowns on weight machine R then L then together;
8.Middle to low pulldowns R then L;
9.Dips on hanging dip bars;
10.Front plank;
11.R and L plank;
12.V sit with Russian twist and 15 lb weight;
13.Tricep pushups with a few regular pushups;
14.Repeat planks etc. until reaching 30min.
Thu AM Run L1 trail run preceeded by fastwalk 10min then run 45min 0:45


Fri AM KYK L1 kayaking 0:45


Sat AM Run Intensity: Speeds/L3-L4 intervals: 15min.L1, 3min.L2, 3min.L4, 4x20sec.accels w.40sec.OFFs. The workout @ L3-L4 (building into L4 during the 2nd set) 1-2 x through (1,2,3,2,1) with 1 min recovery between intervals. Flat for speedy legs. Start pushing into L4 at the end of the first set OR 1/4 through the 2nd set. L1 cool down. If the first set goes well and you are feeling good, then make your decision about completing the 2nd set or not. My coach said, "If your body is feeling sluggish or tired by the end of the 1st set, then I would suggest not doing the 2nd set! You want to end this interval session knowing you could easily do a few more intervals!" 1:00

PM WT RM Strength: warmup w. the hoppy plyos,do core&arms similar to Thusday (less legs but also did leg extensions) 0:30
Sun AM Run trail run/fasthike toggle varied terrain rocks, roots, road, loam, hills, and flats 2:00


Total Hours


KEY: The references to L1, L2, L3 and L4 in the spreadsheet refer to heart rate zones, with L1 being lowest heart rate. A general way to think about these heart rate training zones is: L1 is Level 1 - very easy to talk, L2 is Level 2 - easy to talk, L3 is Level 3 - difficult to talk marathon race pace, L4 - cannot talk 5K race pace, L5 - WFO sprint pace maximum speed. Key to modes of training: Ski Walk/Bound SW/SS, Ski Skate SSK, Ski Classic SCL, Rollerski Skate RSSK, Rollerski Classic RSCL, Road Bike RdB, Mountain Bike MtB, Kayak or Row KYK, Double Poling DP, Weight Room/Strength WTRM. (For in-depth information about training plans, periodization of training and all the details that go into making up a training year, please look for CXC Academy or another training organization for that kind of detail.)

Shop Altra trail running shoes...

It's been a long time since I loved a pair of trail running shoes like I do my new Altra Timps! I found them on Amazon, and agree with all the glowing reviews. The Zero Drop plus nice treads and more cushoning than the Superiors (which are great shoes too) makes my feet happy to run and jump and enjoy all kinds of terrain. So, that's my glowing review of the Altra Timp trail running shoes.

DISCLAIMER: All sports including Cross Country Skiing have inherent risks. This training page is provided as information only. It is not a prescription for training. It is provided without the benefit of assessing the reader's health, fitness or skill. It is not a substitute for qualified personal coaching. Obtain a doctor's medical assessment before engaging in strenuous exercise. By reading this page, you agree to indemnify the author and any associated entity from any harm you may incur if you decide to follow the training program, and you agree you are at your own risk and that you hold harmless the author and any other associated entity.

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