I hope this email finds you smiling, rejuvenated, and with lots of vitamin D after the summer (unless you were in the West and are still trying to dry your rollerski boots).
As usual another 2.5 months have slipped by, and I'm getting excited as the leaves start to turn and the nights are cool...And as per usual I will attempt to keep this update short and sweet (not unlike the dates stuffed with hunks of Giddy cacao paste I just enjoyed).
Last time I touched base with my sponsors and supporters, it was mid-June and I was rehabbing heavily from the dislocated shoulder. I went from doing all my aerobic work running and spin biking, to running/ski striding/spin biking/road cycling/legs only roller skiing, to now training completely normally...except for less double-poling work than I normally would do. My strength training has progressed far, and I can now confirm I finally have scaps and lats (to help take over for my unstable shoulder joint), and actual glutes...that all fire properly and help propel me forward! Suffice to say, my shoulder has recovered really well and I was able to train harder than ever - every year you are able to train more, and harder, as you mature - as planned this summer, just a lot more of it was lower-body focused! I'm able to rollerski all my hardest workouts now, with two poles, and only the prone shooting is really bothering me anymore, as my rifle really puts pressure on my right shoulder.
I trained here in Canmore for all of June and July, sadly having to skip out on the national team bike camp in the Okanagan Valley because I wasn't roller skiing yet. However I managed to get in more quality training hours, and more peaks bagged (see what I did with the lingo there?), than I thought possible! The first chunk of August was spent in my personal paradise - a training camp on the Haig Glacier. After a 17km run up and into the camp, you sleep at 2400m and train at 2800m. Every day the athletes wake up, eat, hike up to the glacier, ski, hike back down, eat, sleep, and repeat. Even with some rain at the start, I still was very happy putting in lots of big hours on snow, not pavement, and came out of the camp ready for some hard intensities. When we train up at high altitudes we can't do short hard interval training, so as soon as I ran out of the glacier I took advantage of the extra red blood cells I built up there! I was also extra motivated while catching as much of the Rio Olympics as I could...seeing the Canadians I know (the women!!!!) doing so well and putting it all out there on the world stage was incredible inspiring.
The last bit of August was a recovery week from training, meaning that my training hours were really reduced, and I was lucky enough to be able to visit my family for a week at the cottage in northern Ontario. A week of catching up and lake fun was exactly what I needed.
My recovery week wrapped up with an incredible fundraiser in my name at the Listowel Rifle and Revolver Club (my home gun club). I was absolutely blown away by the outpouring of support from friends, extended family, shooting enthusiasts, fellow athletes, and strangers alike. The Listowel Rifle and Revolver Club and the Pinecrest Revolver and Gun Club are two of my title sponsors, and I truly could not race for Canada without them. I am so grateful and happy to say that I won't need to stress over my race fees this winter, as the generosity of many hard-working individuals has allowed me the freedom to continue chasing this dream. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Heading into September, I've got a couple of glorious weeks of training here in Canmore - can you tell I love autumn in the mountains?! - before heading to Park City, Utah, for a training camp with the national team. Park City is the perfect place for lots of volume training at a high altitude, with long paved mountain passes - and a fun chance for me to train more with the girls I travel and race with all winter. I'm looking forward to the weeks of hard work to come, the larches turning yellow, and many delicious bowls of pumpkin pie oatmeal.
I attached a couple of shots from some training adventures this summer (you can follow me on instagram @erin_feminem or twitter @erinyungblut for more random training pictures). The first one is up high on the trail leading from the camp to the Haig Glacier itself; the second is of myself, friend/world traveler Michele, and friend/former ski coach Julie; the third is a panorama of the snow on the glacier; and the last is from the top of Windtower mountain as I refuelled with a delicious bar from my new protein bar sponsor, Temple (they're an incredible Canadian company, making nutritious and clean bars in blow-your-mind flavours - www.templebelongshere.com).
Thanks for reading - and thank you for supporting, encouraging, and believing in my journey as I move towards my athletic goals:
"The glory of our world is transitory, and we should not measure our lives by it, but by the choice we make to follow our Personal Legend, to believe in our utopias and to fight for our dreams. We are all protagonists of our own lives, and it is often the anonymous heroes who leave the deepest mark." (Paulo Coelho)
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!