Skate Skiing

I started the day with an enjoyable workout this morning at the gym. We did our Thursday weight circuit. I am still trying to strengthen my rotator cuff and had to do a few stations on my own but overall it was a nice morning. The group is great. We have a great range of people from high school to their 40's and 50's. It is fun to see how everyone works off each other to get through a rather tough little workout. I know when I was in high school the last thing I thought about was going to the gym at 5:30 in the morning. I give them props.

So a few of my friends in my triathlon group: Natalie, Jessi, Roger, Ben and Virginia and I tried this sport called skate skiing. It is kind of like cross-country skiing (which I have never done) and rollerblading (which I have not done for 15 years). I have been snowboarding for the last few years so I feel pretty comfortable up on the mountain. Well, let me tell you something, having your feet strapped to an 8" snowboard is completely different than these tiny slivers of fiberglass they call skies. Robin and her husband John from Fitness Fanatics in Spokane offered to give a few of us lessons. They definitely had a tough job ahead of them.

They made us start out without using any poles (that’s me in the background). According the Robin, you do not get poles until you go up and down the path like 10 times, unless you are Natalie. After watching how effortlessly Robin skate skies, I was like no problem. Ohh boy was I wrong. I am in pretty good shape and after the first pass I needed to catch my breath. Eventually you start to get the hang of it; well at least you think so.

So we have made our passes back and forth on the trail and Robin says we can now have our poles. I was like "Sweet", now I am really going to get going, watch out Robin here we come. Well you know the test were you try and pat your head and rub your belly in a circle at the same time? I know you are going to try it right now. Well that is what is was like adding these friggin poles to this already very technical sport. The poles are flying all over as you try and catch your balance. My poles didn't get the memo to stay behind my skies. I can't tell you how many times I ran over the bottom of the poles with my ski and then of course fall down.

Now that we are all experts and getting ready to join the next Olympic trials we headed out around Mt. Spokane. The one thing I learned during a brief practice session is that downhill is easy(ier) and going uphill is NOT. There were a few downhills that I got going pretty fast, I was like Bode Miller you ain’t got nothing on me, until my skis would cross and I would hit the ground. The only thing to do was to get up and try again. I use that philosophy all the time. The only thing that is going to keep you down is yourself. The picture above is me flying by the camera, I am the white streak of light and the yellow dot was the moon.

If you ever have an opportunity to try skate skiing I would highly suggest it. In the Pacific Northwest we have amazing surroundings that allow you to try new sports all year long. It was great to spend time with such fun people and will definitely go again. From left to right: me, Natalie, Ben, Roger and John and Jessi is behind the camera.


jessithompson said...

I am literally laughing out loud reading your post. You were awesome out there, buddy, and I was impressed how many times you got up and still had a great attitude about the whole thing. It was a great time and we couldn't have asked for a more gorgeous night. Lookin' forward to the next ski adventure!

LORIE said...

Steve: Love the pictures. . . nice touch. Thanks for the fun post!!! I am planning to be at the Greenfield's shower. . . maybe I will see you there?