Sunday, October 5, 2014

Why we LOVE Minnesota (the whole Mid-West actually!)

Team Gregg loves living, training and giving back to the community that helped us reach our Olympic Goals. We realize that we were not born in Minnesota but we definitely "Made" here. It is no coincidence that we both made Olympic Teams with Minnesota driver's licenses in our wallets :) It is this reason that we owe so much to the ski community who helped foster our passion for Cross Country Skiing and has helped us realize that the Olympics were only the tip of the ice burg to follow! We certainly believe that we would not have reached our potential without the awesome support of the entire Mid-West community and the sponsors, both old and new, who have helped us through the good (fast) and bad (not so fast) times! Thank You for all your commitment to Team Gregg!
Team Gregg at Super Tour Finals last year with our current sponsors! One more to be added to the list and announced soon!
The Best part of the Twin Cities ski community has to be all of the programs and events that take place throughout the year and are connected in some way to Nordic Skiing. I have been coached by Piotr Bednarski since I first came to Minneapolis 10 years ago and I still love getting out and pushing my limits at his daily practices! This year has been awesome because the Loppet Nordic Racing Comp Team has let both Brian and I join them as much as we want :)

LNR Comp Team at the Afton Fall Fair after a tough 8K Time Trial

Some of the fasted ladies in the country!
Leading a Minnesota Youth Ski League (MYSL) practice with Brian.
Getting ready for some skate drills!

Working on our hops...
and our tucks!
Brian and I have always loved the mission of The City of Lakes Loppet Foundation and we are so glad to be a part of the family even more this year! The Loppet has so many fantastic events throughout the year and we love how they try to reach out to North Minneapolis (where we live) because it boarders Theodore Wirth Park! The impact of The Loppet Foundation is undeniable and we hope to spread it even further!

Awesome Loppet Member Event at Cedar Lake
We all paddled the chain of lakes on the most beautiful evening of the year!
Awesome to leave the hustle and bustle of the city while being in the middle of the city.

We are not very good at paddling together but we have fun :)
There are very few days when I cannot find someone who is excited to get out and train with me. This past Wednesday morning was no exception. Despite temps in the 40's and pouring rain these tough ladies joined me for a strength and stretch session! I am sure there were a few sore abs afterwards. 

Smiles all around.
 I am also grateful for the numerous events around the Twin Cities outside of the Ski Community, although I always seem to run into skiers there too ;) The Autumn Trail Series was an awesome chance to get out and make myself run hard with a large group of people through the woods. It was my 20th intensity session in the past 3 weeks and I was feeling a bit sluggish! Thankfully the group got me going and I was able to nail my workout!
Stair Climbing friends!
Chloe from LNR at the race too!
Of course there are days when I head out the door with my favorite training buddy Lahti! He has been pretty excited about the cooler weather and he can tell snow is on the way!

Not too interested in my socks! Just wants to run!
 On Thursday I joined the LNR Comp team while they ran intervals and cheered them along! It was an awesome obstacle course loop that was set up for the Fast Kids Race later that afternoon. It was fun to run laps on it and make sure it was extra muddy and slippery for the little guys!

Crushing it!
Keeping the Fast Kids moving and warm in the pouring rain before their start!

Awesome Hurdles!

Great group of kids for a rainy rainy day!
This past weekend LNR did an epic 4 hour workout in Afton. The rollerskiing and trail running is my favorite in the entire country! We classic skied for two hours and then switched to running shoes and ran for two more! No one even hinted at being tired or wanting to slow down! We totally aced the day!

Gearing up!
Finally cold enough for tights.
Half way through we posed with some sports drink.
Today Brian and I lead another MYSL clinic at the Hiawatha Park in South Minneapolis. The turnout was a little smaller with the colder temperatures but everyone had a great time and learned a lot!

Brian giving a goal setting talk to both parents and kids.
Brian teaching everyone how to use the speed ladder.
They all learned fast. 
Brian showing his moves...
Teaching his moves to others... 
and then having them rock them on their own!

Everyone worked on agility, technique and speed today.
Brian and I decided to wear our Olympic Outfits together. Here I am wearing my racing suit and podium jacket.

Brian is also wearing his race suit and training jacket. It was fun to share them with the kids!
Only a few more weeks until we leave for Canmore, AB and Frozen Thunder (snow rolled out from last year)! We both decided to stay home in the Mid-West instead of heading out for the USST Park City Camp that is starting this week. Here we get to sleep in our own bed, play with our dog and train more with the LNR crew and other groups! Let us know if you want to come out and join us!!!

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