Training has been all over the place since my 2012 race season wrapped up at the finish of the Minnesota Half Marathon. I skated on and off, as other posts have discussed. However, I haven’t really been in a normal training routine. That said, I have started off-season training this winter with a fairly robust weight routine focused on the muscle groups used in skating. This regimen includes a lot of lifts that target the hamstrings and glutes. Individual exercises include Romanian dead-lifts, Poliquin step-ups, and curtsy squats. The routine covers four days. I am currently using this schedule on Monday through Thursday, with a rest day Friday, and skating or other cardio (like bike intervals, outdoor cycling, or P90X Plyometrics) on either Saturday or Sunday depending on the schedule. The current plan is to follow this schedule through the end of the year, giving me about 8 solid weeks of focus on weight lifting. After that, I plan on using these exercises in conjunction with a lot of dryland and ploymetric exercises in addition to cardiovascular training to build my base. I am working toward a 90 minute finish time at the Roller-Dome marathon, which is scheduled for March 9, 2013. So far, this regimen seems to be working well, and, at the end of week 2, I can already say I need more weight. I also feel like I need more time to get work-outs in, as since I moved to Minnesota, it has been hard to find time to devote an entire hour to a work out.
Thankfully, last weekend, I was able to get out and skate, taking advantage of some unseasonably warm weather for the great white north. Typically, my skates in Minnesota have been along Old Salem Road, a country highway with some good hill climbs, including a brutal 2 mile up-hill right before the turn around point for a 20 mile skate. However, there are some great paved bike trails around the area, and I decided to try the Douglas State Trail. It is a reasonably well paved trail that travels through some very nice countryside. There aren’t very many hill climbs, most of them are short up and down hill sections to traverse bridges over larger roadways. I skated the first five miles of the trail for an out-and-back trip of 10 miles. This section does have two dirt road crossings, and one or two street crossings in addition to the paved and wood bridges. Overall, it is a nice trial that I look forward to skating more often in the future.
Generally, it was a good workout. My legs felt strong, but a bit rusty since it has been a week since I had been on skates. The trip was short, so my feet didn’t bother me very much in the new skates. The training outdoor set-up, which includes Bionic Swiss bearings and Atom One wheels in 86a, worked well on the trail, which was generally smooth. I had a tail wind on the way out, but didn’t really notice until I turned around and headed back. I was running late in my schedule for the day, so I didn’t get to skate very far, but 10 miles was a good distance. I worked a lot on getting on my outside edges, but I think I need to adjust my frames a bit more to force myself onto my outside edges when I set my skate down after a side push. Otherwise, my double push technique seems to be coming along well, as I am generally more comfortable on my outside edges. I have also been working on more side-push and heel carve in my double push technique to maximize the power and speed I get in each push. I hope future workouts at the Roller-Dome will help me hone this before the marathon in March and before the start of outd00r season next year. Now I need to try and get my lift in for the day.