Saturday, April 14, 2007

CSU Steps It Up at Windblown

Several CSUers found some pretty darned good skiing at Windblown today on Step It Up day, including Bob Hamel, just returned from 4 years in the South Pacific about as far away from skiing and snow as its possible to get on this world!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Canoe and Kayak Racing!

Looking for a different training activity? Need to work on that upper body strength, but not ready to rollerski? Want to just go out and hammer on the water on a hot summer night instead of sweat to death running? How about giving canoe and kayak racing a try!

Every Wednesday evening starting in April and running until ski season, Charles River Canoe and Kayak (CRCK) and the Charles River Paddlers hold informal races starting at CRCK in Newton. Races generally start at 6:30 and a typical Wednesday will have recreational class and racing class canoes, olympic class, open and recreational class kayaks, both singles and doubles. Several local skiiers, including myself, Wes Denering, Mark Jacobson, Tom Clemow, Dan Rabinkin, Aims Coney and Terry Myers race along with a great group of other paddlers, some of whom ski when the river is frozen. The course is approximately 4.9 miles (38 - 60 min. depending on your boat and fitness) and the start is run exactly like our Tuesday night races....start the clock and go at 1 minute, with paddlers self-seeded and self-timed.

If you'd like to try one out come on down! The group is glad to get new people involved. Rent a boat at CRCK if you don't own one. People are great about helping newbies and oftentimes you can catch a ride in someone's canoe if you'd just like to try it out, with some advance warning. I started by canoeing with Wes in his racing canoe a few years ago and am now working up to racing an ICF olympic class kayak......if I can stay upright! They are tippy buggers.......

Stone Grinding

Mark Jacobson is organizing a stonegrinding order to send up to Zach Caldwell's service in Vermont. He would like to have names of who is interested and how many pair of skis you'd like done. To check on the grind menu, go to Zach's website at:

Email Mark at:

Monday, April 9, 2007

The New CSU Ski Section News!

After many years with no CSU ski section news I've decided to try a blog for a newsletter/website. I'm hoping to help keep the CSU ski community connected a bit more, particularly in the summer. The goal here is to be able to post photos or links to photos of CSUers, links to videos such as Bob Haydock's excellent videos on Utube, race results, a schedule of upcoming events and training sessions and anything else that might be useful and keep us the vibrant ski community we are, both in season and out of season. So, send me your stories, photos, results, or training events and I'll get it up here. In addition, I might post some old stories, blasts from the past, since I keep finding old newsletters down in the basement. Check out the following story!

Pride Goeth Before the Fall

I unearthed this 1996 gem while cleaning out my old tax files.

I gleamed in my new lycra racing suit. Its blue matched the color of the spring sky and the splashes of purple gave it added flair. I topped off the outfit with a pair of dark Oakley's to give that slightly mysterious and threatening look.

We were gathered at the Putney School in Vermont for a a 30K skate race in early March. We lined up at the start in our brightly colored suits and charged up the hill when the starter shouted "Go!". I pulled myself up near the front as we flashed by John Caldwell, dean of American ski racing, who watched approvingly from a lawn chair. Soon after we entered the woods we shot down a steep hill which has a lovely banked right-hand turn at the bottom. I careened full speed into the corner, but was horrified to find myself suddenly on my side. Alright, I thought, sure I've fallen, but I'll just slide along, get up, and jump right back into the race. But the hard-packed snow was slick. Sliding on my lycra suit like a kid on a snow tube I shot straight as the trail went right. I found myself sliding off the trail and over the edge of the embankment. I heard Bob Haydock shout my name as I disappeared from sight. Quickly I realized that this was a south facing hillside on a sunny spring day. I oozed down the muddy face of the hill bumping to a stop at the bottom. In only a few spots did little bits of blue and purple peek out from the uniform brown muck that covered me. I leapt to my feet. As I stood I was eye-level with the boots of the other racers whizzing by. I herringboned franticlly up the muddy bank to the trail. Racers were still flashing past leaving precious little room for me to stand on the side of the trail and absolutely no room to begin skating. There seemed to be more room on the inside of the curve. I waited for a break and sprang across the trail. Just as I gave my final pole push a skier whipped past me neatly severing my pole in tow with his thigh. I picked up the pieces of my pole. For only $95 I could replace the shaft if I rescued the tip and handle, so I had to save them. I slowly skated down the trail. A vision in brown clutching the splintered pole parts in my formerly yellow Saloman racing glove.

I managed to skate my way around the loop back to the start/finish line. I had completed one of nine laps in a 30K race. Should I go on? As I came to the line Caldwell's weathered face brighted to a big smile. He ran to my ski bag and helped me retrieve my extra set of poles. "Here", he said, "after such a good start you can't quit now!" I sighed and skated off down the trail in dead last. With luck perhaps I could catch the elderly woman skiing in the woolen knickers.

Rob Bradlee

Sunday, April 8, 2007

April Strength Work

Here are Rob Bradlee's suggestions to get ready for Monday strength workouts starting in May.

CSU Individual Strength Program: April

We will start group strength workouts in May. During April you can do some general strength workouts to build your strength and be prepared for the more specific strength work we do in our group workouts.
Twice per week is all that is necessary, although you can do three times per week if you’d like. If you do the strength workout right at the end of a running, rolling, or biking workout then you can skip the warm-up that I’ve suggested below. I suggest just doing 1 set of each exercise during the first week, two sets in the second week, and three sets thereafter. I also highly recommend that you either do some double-pole rollerskiing, OR use elastic bands for upper body conditioning specific to the poling motion. You just spent the whole winter getting your arms in shape. Don’t throw that conditioning away!


10 minute run
15 Wood-chop with Medicine ball
15 Standing Rotations with Medicine ball
15 leg swings on each leg

Primary Stabilization: 30 seconds to 2 minutes each (as long as you can hold good form)

Static Front Bridge
Static Side Bridge (both sides)
Static Back Bridge
Dead Bug (lie on back, flatten spine against the floor, move arms and legs up and down)

Leg Strength

6 to 12 squats with no weight
6 to 12 lunges
6 to 12 step-ups

Arm and Core Strength:
One to three sets of:

10-15 Overhead press with dumbbell. 15 to 30 lbs as you are able.
5-10 Wide pull-ups
5-15 Dips
5-15 one-arm rowing with 15 to 30 lb dumbbell.
10 Lateral side-ups on gym ball
15 Backups on gym ball
15 V-sits with medicine ball (or small weight)
15 Scorpions on gym ball