It all started when I was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia at the age of three. Skiing was my distraction during my battle with cancer and one of the things I believe kept me alive. I started with ski jumping and began the cross country skiing portion of the sport at the age of six. I've been training ever since. I have used the advice from every coach I have ever had; whether it was good or bad advice, it was an opportunity for me to learn and narrow down what works for me. Through this process I have also learned what works for others. I have used my knowledge from 20+ years of cross country skiing to help guide and mentor teammates, young athletes, and older athletes. I have always had an affinity with helping people, regardless of whether it's volunteering for a non-profit, raising awareness for the fight against cancer, or coaching skiing.
What sets me apart is that I am still currently an athlete at the highest level of our sport. I am a member of the U.S. Ski Team and USA Nordic Combined team. The 2014-2015 season will mark my ninth year on the National Team. So far I have managed to score a national championship and sixteen career top tens on World Cup, including a historic win of the Kings Cup at Holmenkollen in Oslo, Norway. Together with teammates we captured a bronze medal at the 2013 World Championships in Val di Fiemme, Italy. However, I have my sights set higher for the upcoming years. Coaching helps me learn more about my competitors and myself, while at the same time allowing me to help you improve in whatever way you desire. While I'm still new at the coaching side of the sport, I am eager to jump in headfirst and share the vast knowledge base I have from being a competitor.
I started road riding as a way to heal some knee pain associated with running and the impact of Nordic Combined training. It was not long until I realized the benefit it was having on my training so I stuck with it. Naturally as my skills progressed so did my ambition and using my racing knowledge from Nordic Combined I quickly worked my way into the regular race circuit. I won a few local Crits as a cat-5 but my real strong suit was climbing. Excelling in the mountainous terrain around Park City, I became a regular competitor in the road races. Now with 5 years of racing under my belt, I am ready to share what I have learned. Cycling was, and is, a perfect compliment to Nordic Combined training. However, given that my winter racing season runs until March and the road racing season starts about the same time, I had to find a way to be competitive and quickly since my first road ride of the season is usually March 20th. Using a combination of strength training, along with a steady balance of both intensity and distance training, I was able to be competitive in the local Crits and Road Races. I can apply those skills to your training using heart rate or power as a guide to help get you into race shape and quickly. These same principles will be the tools you can use to stay in shape and improve year after year.
Cross country skiing is hard, not only physically but also technically. I find the best way to learn is first and foremost to ski, and ski a lot. Each session doesn't have to be a marathon, but the more you practice the more your technique will improve. If your goal is to ski several marathons back-to-back over the winter, together we'll work to get you in the best shape to ski the races back-to-back. When you struggle to master something, I will be there to guide you through the technical process necessary to improve. I believe in goal-setting and achieving or exceeding those goals by establishing a step-by-step process to get there. Commitment to your goals, owning them both personally and publically, and adapting when necessary (because life can always throw a curve ball) will keep your progress consistent. Together we will do the work and do it the right way, on and off the snow, to have fun, learn new skills, race, and hopefully accomplish what we set out to do!