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My Cross Country Ski Training
Week 46
Break Time

cross country skiers

This series shares my cross country ski training and racing, and this is Week 46 of my training and racing year, which started last May. It's Break Time. This week features a break in the training action and then Spring Skiing here we go.

cross country skier

First, about this week's images. That's me and my fav. training partner husband Tom taking a break while enjoying a nice tour ski in the sun. As for the top-of-page header image, that's me racing in a raging snowstorm during the Yellowstone Rendezvous cross country ski marathon.

It's Break Time

Yes! It's time for a break after accomplishing the cross country ski racing season. So, here goes with Week 46 of cross country ski training. Coaching advice varies for this week, with some elite coaches recommending that athletes continue to perform two light intensity sessions per week. However, my coach always stressed the importance of taking a full break for a couple of weeks at the end of the training year.

Even world class athletes differ in their approach to post-race season training. Some state that they like to keep up some intensity, so that their bodies will not fall out of shape too much. Plus, taking a whole month off after race season really makes it hard to start up with intensity workouts when training season rolls around again on May 1st.

I decided to take almost a full break during this week, since I am having success with physical therapy rehab, to loosen up tight muscles that started to plague me this Winter. So, this week's log shows that's what I have done. As for next week, stay tuned for lots of fun Spring skiing adventures.

This blog is based on my cross country ski training, and the info. is provided just 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. When all weekly posts are complete, this blog shows an entire training year, based on US Ski Association and professional coaching plans for middle distance cross country ski racers. It's the kind of detailed information I wish I had early on in my ski racing. So enjoy! You can view more of my training log by clicking on one of the navigation links below.

So let's check out Week 46...

Week 46 AM/PM Mode Workouts description: Goal hrs. ~6:30 Easy - Week 46-50 goal is to SKI OUT THE SNOW: Coach's advice: “Just get out there and continue to ski if it is available! All exercise is L1 unless noted. Enjoy the outdoors! Ski if it is available and transition into other sports/mode of exercise when you feel you would like to! This time is for enjoying training and just doing what is possible with the weather!” Hours
Mon AM WT RM OFF - Rehab exercises and hamstring stretching strengthening rehab routine: 2x/day every day. To see my physical therapy exercises, use the navigation links below to go to the prior 2 week's logs for Weeks #44 and #45.

Tue AM SCL L1 classic ski on new snow newly groomed. Perfect sunny day and wonderful skiing on my Fischer 902s. 1:00

PM Run Run L1 on hard surface plowed snow covered road, directly after skiing. 0:15
Wed AM SCL L1 classic ski on day-old tracks with a bit of icing and glazing. Take it super easy. No herringboning or expending effort on steep hard hills. 0:35

PM WT RM Physical therapy exercises and PT appointment. 0:30
Thu AM Other Hiking down to the lake and back up the hill. 0:30

PM WT RM Physical therapy exercises 0:15
Fri AM WT RM Physical therapy exercises. Big snowstorm today. 0:15

PM Other Hiking down to the lake and back up the hill. 0:30
Sat AM WT RM Physical therapy exercises. Big snow today again. 0:15

PM Other Hiking down to the lake and back up the hill. 0:30
Sun AM WT RM Physical therapy exercises. 0:15

PM SCL Classic skiing varied terrain. New tracks and VR45. Felt good! The break from skiing every day is working out for the better, and I am feeling refreshed. 1:05
Week Summary


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.)

Shopping for Treats...

That yummy treat I am having is a Clif Bar. It's our favorite treat during cross country skiing. On second thought, is our fav. a Larabar? Now, that is a really hard question. But, also Tahoe Trail Bars are also yummy and healthful treats for replenishing resources during cross country ski tours. And afterwards, there are always gourmet treats in the RV, such as Tahoe chocolate chip cookies! Anyway, now that I have whet your appetite, here are some links to these treats...

shop energy bars

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.

  • First Woman Overall in the following races: Kneissel Rendezvous Marathon, President's Cup Marathon, Ridge to River Iron Woman, Pepsi Challenge 10K, two consecutive years: 10th Mountain Division Biathlon, and Muskoka Loppet
  • First Woman Overall and First Mixed Team wins for three consecutive years: Ski to Sea and Ridge to River multi-sport races
  • Second Woman Overall in the following races: Ski Jeep Challenge Series, Gatineau Loppet 27K Worldloppet Race, Superior Ski Classic Marathon, Grand Marnier Cup Marathon, Yellowstone Rendezvous Half-Marathon
  • Third Woman Overall: Payette Lakes Ski Marathon

  • U.S. Ski Association Cross Country Ski Championships results:
    • 26th Place Women All Age Classes in 20K Freestyle
    • 32nd Place Women All Age Classes (3rd in Class F30-39) 25K Freestyle at Royal Gorge
    • 51st Woman All Age Classes 15K Classic at Lake Placid
    • 2nd Woman Overall in the Masters Category Age 30 and up (First in Class F30-34) 20K Classic at Royal Gorge
  • U.S Ski Association Masters Nationals results:
    • First Woman Overall 25K Freestyle race
    • 6th Woman Overall 10K Freestyle race
    • 6th Woman Overall 20K Freestyle race
  • American Birkebeiner 53K Worldloppet Race Elite Wave starter for two consecutive years finishing 22nd and 29th Woman Overall (5th in class F35-39 both years).

After moving to Lake Tahoe, Mary Kay won several Top 3 Woman finishes in Far West Cross Country Ski events. She joined U.S. Biathlon Association and won two consecutive years Overall Woman at the 10th Mountain Division Biathlon, and was runner-up in her third year. She won Top Gun at the Washington State Biathlon Championships, out scoring all men and women. Currently, Mary Kay is a member of Ishpeming Ski Club and frequent competitor in cross country skiing, bicycling and kayaking events.


Navigation Links:

View more of my training log...

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