Salen Sweden

11.Aug.2012 by Ida Sargent

Today is a well appreciated rest day halfway through our camp with the Swedes and we’re all enjoying the time to relax and recover from a few big days of training in Salen, Sweden.  The breakfast buffet, laundry, and some yoga are on the schedule for the morning and then this afternoon we will drive back to Torsby for the second half of our camp.  Tunnel skiing again tomorrow morning!

The first part of the camp has been AWESOME!  Our Swedish hosts have been wonderful and it has been lots of fun having new friends and training partners.  A year ago I would never have imagined myself feeling  comfortable enough to laugh and joke or run and ski alongside these girls, many of whom are my idols on the the World Cup circuit.  The training has been tough and exciting.  Every day has totaled between four and five hours and included a sprint race, intervals, double pole speeds, specific strength, and long runs in the mountains and bogs.  The training plan for the week looked very complicated (partly because it was written in Swedish) but there hasn’t been anything noticeably crazy or different between their training and what I’m used to.  Many of the workouts are exactly the same as what we do at home and these girls laugh and have just as much fun while training.  It’s just hours and hours of hard work!  Here are some pictures of the Salen portion of our camp.

Salen is the start of the Vasaloppet, a 90km ski race to Mora, Sweden.   Salen is a small town but it's obvious that skiing is a big part of this community.

Salen is the start of the Vasaloppet, a 90km ski race to Mora, Sweden. Salen is a small town but it's obvious that skiing is a big part of this community.

We stopped at the stadium on our way into town.  It's a huge open field with enough space for the 40,000 competitors to toe the line.

We stopped at the stadium on our way into town. It's a huge open field with enough space for the 40,000 competitors to toe the line.

We stayed in cabins in Lindvallen, a resort just outside of Salen.  Gunde Svan spent many years training here.  It's the perfect location in the mountains with rollerskiing and running out our front door.

We stayed in cabins in Lindvallen, a resort just outside of Salen. Gunde Svan spent many years training here. It's the perfect location in the mountains with rollerskiing and running out our front door.

Every day started with an awesome breakfast buffet with tons of options to keep us fueled through all the hours of training.

Every day started with an awesome breakfast buffet with tons of options to keep us fueled through all the hours of training.

The camp started with an OD run in a bog on the top of the mountain.  It was soft footing but with some rainy weather, there were lots of muddy feet and legs at the end!

The camp started with an OD run in a bog on the top of the mountain. It was soft footing but with some rainy weather, there were lots of muddy feet and legs at the end!

There are lots of great roads for rollerskiing and all the cars are very tolerant to rollerskiers.  Here Kikkan and Anna Hag lead a train of skiers.

There are lots of great roads for rollerskiing and all the cars are very tolerant to rollerskiers. Here Kikkan and Anna Hag lead a train of skiers.

Following different skiers and mimicking technique has been very helpful.

Following different skiers and mimicking technique has been very helpful.

We had a skate sprint time trial and the local club skiers cheered us on.  Check out the bike which they found in the bushes!

We had a skate sprint time trial and the local club skiers cheered us on. Check out the bike which they found in the bushes!

The Swedish coaches have been awesome and very welcoming to our team.  They said we added "spice" to their camp

The Swedish coaches have been awesome and very welcoming to our team. They said we added "spice" to their camp

Another morning we ran across the mossy high tundra off the trails for a few hours.  Running through knee deep vegetation is great for the legs!

Another morning we ran across the mossy high tundra off the trails for a few hours. Running through knee deep vegetation is great for the legs!

Cloudberries for snacking!  There were also little blueberries hidden in the bushes.

Cloudberries for snacking! There were also little blueberries hidden in the bushes.

Lots of new Swedish friends!

Lots of new Swedish friends!

Thanks Marwe for new rollerskis which are closely matched in speed to the Swedes' rollers!

Thanks Marwe for new rollerskis which are closely matched in speed to the Swedes' rollers!