All posts in May 2014

Test week.

Last week was all about tests for me. First I had a running test on a treadmill, and then a biathlon test race with roller skies and shooting.

The first tests of the season is always nerve wrecking, because you haven’t been training that much yet and aren’t quite sure on how well you will perform.

The running test was performed in Drammen on “Synergi helse” with an old friend of mine as test leader.

laktattest

The main goal of this test was to find my lactate threshold and my maxO2 lung capacity.

To find the lactate threshold you start running on the treadmill in a moderate pass with 10.5% incline. After 5 minutes of running you go off the treadmill and take a little blood sample and run that in a machine that indicate your blood lactate value. Directly after you have given some blood, you start running again, each time with a little bit higher speed. You continue to do this until the tester can see that your body starts producing more lactate than your body can consume. This test isn`t that hard and I didn’t go over 190 in heart rate. I found out that my lactate threshold was at 183 which is about 90% of my maximum heart rate.

After the lactate test is over the real pain begins with the maxO2 test.

In the same way as the lactate test you are always running with an incline of 10.5%. You start with a moderate pace but then the speed picks up 0,5km/h every 30 seconds until you can’t push yourself anymore. You also have to wear a mask that measures your lung capacity during the entire test.

maxo2

I started with a speed of 10km/h and ran until I reached 16km/h so the test wasn’t that long in time, but it is always a real test for both mind and body to push yourself to the breaking point.

After the running tests were done, it was time to do a real biathlon test race. It took place in Oslo on the nation arena Holmenkollen.

holmenkollen-skytebane

The iconic jumping arena of Holmenkollen is located side by side with the shooting arena.

holmenkollen

It was going to be a 15km long test race with four shootings on a track that I never had skied with roller-skies before, so I wasn´t quite sure how I was going to make my race strategy. This was also my first exercise with my new coach, (who for now will remain unnamed) so I felt I had to perform at my very best.

As always in the start of the season it was hard to find the right starting pace, and I did start a little too fast, so when I got to lap three I was pretty much dead.

testrenn-holmenkollen

I did however, manage to change focus and started to focus more on my technique which resulted in the last lap being the fastest and also the lap with the best feeling.  The shooting was really good on prone, but I had some problems in the last standing shooting so I was not that happy with the overall shooting performance.

skyting-holmenkollen

 

The good thing is that I feel like I have had a great start, and I have found many things that I can improve on until next time!

I am going to do these tests every 4th week so I am really looking forward to see my progress after some more weeks of training.

“Holmenkollstafetten”

Last weekend I went to Oslo to run the “Holmenkollenstafetten” with the running club “Vestre spone IF”

Holmenkollstafetten is the worlds biggest running relay event, with over 3200 participating teams, and each team has 15 runners.

I ran leg nr.4. It was 1.7km long and was called “the roller coaster”, so it went up and down all the way.

Here are some pictures from the relay.

My startingnumber

start-number-holmenkollstafetten

Map of the trackløypekart-holmenkollstafettenMe in green, scouting for for the one I was going to exchange with.venter-på-vekslingThe exchange.veksling-holmenkollstafettenAnd off we go.starten-på-min-etappe-holmenkollstafetten

Finish line.mål-holmenkollstafetten

I believe these guys won the prize for best costume ;) drakter-holmenkollstafette copy

All in all it was a great experience, and won’t hesitate to do it again next year!

/Christian

Contrasts in life.

The season ending didn’t go as I had planned. Instead it turned out to be an emotional roller coaster for me. What was supposed to be a nice season ending with the Swedish championships in Östersund, was suddenly put on hold when I got a call letting me know that there been a tragic accident in my girlfriends family.

Her cousin had been spending the weekend at the family cabin with her two kids and a friend. They didn’t notice the gas leak in the cabin, and the mother and her seven year old son both ended up suffocating in their sleep, while the nine year old daughter and her friend both survived, but was in coma.

I found out that the funeral was taking place at the same day as the Swedish championship sprint. Although I felt saddened by the tragedy of this family that I had never met, truth be told, my initial thought was that this competition was going to be the most important race of the year and I couldn’t travel 650km to Vikersund in Norway to go to the funeral. Because If I didn`t compete at the sprint on Friday I wouldn’t be able to compete in the pursuit on Saturday either.

The next day when I was having one of my pre race intervals, all I could think about was my girlfriend and her family, and how important it was for me to be there for them.  So I made the decision to put aside the importance of the competition and instead attend the funeral and show my support.

So instead of preparing myself for competition I flew down to Vikersund on Thursday, attended the funeral on Friday and then back up to Östersund on Saturday making it back just in time so I could support my teammates on their pursuit. After the race we all went to the championship banquet where there was the price ceremony for the Swedish championship race and the Swedish cup, which I won two weeks earlier.

Here’s a picture from the price ceremony with me and the winners from the other age classes

swe-cup-first-place

So I found myself just in a matter of days being on an extreme emotional roller coaster.

Looking back I am really glad that I made the decision I did. For me these events really put what truly matters in perspective. While I am committed and passionate about being the best biathlete I can be, at the end of the day being the best person that I can be matters more. The events of this weekend reinforced my belief that family and friends must come first and everything else second.

So that became my season ending. Not the way I planned but a little wiser for it.

/Christian