Updates

What a lot of fun the Auburn Ski Club fun races were today?! It was a beautiful day with fast snow for the races. I was also glad to see all of the spandex clad nordies out in force.

In other news, I’ve recently completed my undergraduate degree at UNR and am looking forward to not having to have homework weighing on my mind for a little bit. I’ve been working on grad school applications and am on the job hunt. you know, that whole becoming an adult thing. I’m also going home to Utah for the holidays, but should be back for the races coming up (that is if we can get some real snow!).

That’s it for now,

Gus

Check out this live Mumford and Sons song. It’s real good

Grand Rapids, Minnesota

Phillip Violett Mount Itasca, MN

Thursday I traveled to Minnesota with my father Paul Violett for the IBU Cup trials in Grand Rapids.  Friday was a quality training day, My prone shooting was the best its ever been.  I did a few pick-ups to wake up the body in preparation for racing.  Mount Itasca has a 2.5k loop of man made snow.

Phillip Violett, Sprint start Mount Itasca, MN

Today, I races the 10K sprint race. The format is 2.5k shoot prone,  2.5k shoot standing, and then two 2.5k loops to total 10k.  Overall, the race was a little disappointing , I had 2 misses prone and 4 misses standing finishing in 7th.  I came into the standing shooting way to hot so my heart rate was thru the roof making it very hard to hit anything.  Skiing felt good so I hope to link fast skiing and straight shooting the next two races.

Paul Violett, Lost Forty

Post race my Dad and I made the hour trip north from Grand Rapids to the Lost Forty in the Chippewa National Forest.  The Lost Forty is a forty anchors of old growth forest that did not get cut in the turn of the century. Coming from California and being a forester’s son the trees are not very impressive, but for the mid-west it was very impressive.

Sprint start

Sprint Prone

Sprint Standing

Sprint Lap

Sprint Finish

Tomorrow, I have a 12.5k Pursuit Race Starting at 11am!

Keep it Up

Training in this time of the season is rough. Snowy km’s are hard to come by and traveling to the snow on a regular basis can be really tough. How to stay in shape during this awkward phase? Here’s a few ideas:

Swimming: Playing (basketball/water polo) in the shallow end with feet off the floor requires a lot of core strength

Bounding for technique or cardio fitness: It never fails to amaze me that I can max out in 2 minutes and go hardly anywhere. Or maybe that’s a bad sign . . .

Core strength: All the regular pushups, bicycle crunches, and dips. Tuck jump with a 1-2-3 count in the tuck position and do the superman trunk flex while tossing a ball between partners.

Trail running: I spent all of June wondering when the snow would melt so I could train for the upcoming trail runs. The Tahoe Rim Trail and Pacific Crest trails are still wide open. Get the most out of your running shoes while you still can. But you’ll need the hat, windbreaker, and gloves.

And no matter what, keep the excitement and focus up. When the snow does arrive, there will no time to catch up and get into racing shape.

I’m on the Mala Rodriguez channel at Pandora. Here’s a sample:
Reina de la Calle

Gratitude

As usual, things have been exceedingly busy since late November and Thanksgiving. At the risk of sounding cliché, it’s truly been a whirlwind, between prepping for my final running race, getting ready for ski season and starting my winter coaching gig. But even though the holiday has passed, I wanted to take a moment and reflect on the meaning of Thanksgiving — gratitude — as it applies to my life now.

It can be easy for me, as I think it is for most people, to get caught up in feeling bad about my situation, or worrying or stressing about the things I don’t have, or haven’t accomplished. As a constant striver, I think that, despite setting short-term goals, I can become dissatisfied about not being where I ultimately want to be just yet. But I think it’s immensely important — if at no other time than the holidays — to take a good, hard look at all of these things we do have, and acknowledge just how blessed we really are.

Okay, so I’m scrambling to balance four jobs and still just barely squeaking by (or sometimes just missing) on the bills every month, while still maintaining and working toward the goal of becoming an elite professional athlete: not exactly the ideal scenario. But, it’s what I’ve got, and I’ve got to work with it. And really, in the grand scheme of things, “what I’ve got” in fact makes me pretty darn fortunate.

For starters, let’s consider the fact that I can dedicate myself toward such lofty athletic goals, seemingly ‘unrealistic’ or not. I am able-bodied, healthy and happy. I am able to train long, hard hours and push myself to levels beyond the comprehension of your everyday ‘average joe’ walking down the street. And through everything I’ve done, and all the years I have trained and competed, I have stayed (relatively) healthy. Now that is a blessing.

I can run, with my own two legs — and run far! I can escape into nature on my own accord, leaving life’s stresses behind. I can chose to run slow, or go fast. I can bike up mountain passes, over peaks, across creeks and meadows or along coastal roads. I can go anywhere, really, and all on my own capacity — provided that the two wheels stay pumped up. I can swim across lakes, and feel the water on my face and between my toes. I can ski on virtually any terrain, whether in sunshine or among falling snow. To be able to do all of the things I am capable of — even if not yet at the level I am hoping to reach — I am so very grateful. I know there are others who long to simply be able do these things. So thank you, to my healthy, strong and capable body, for enabling me to train, push and compete. Thank you for taking me on incredible adventures, to unbelievable landscapes and to new heights some others may never reach.

And thank you also, to my mindset, for being as ‘crazy’ as you are. For being crazy enough, as most people say, to let me actually enjoy working out, getting stronger and faster, because I know this is a struggle for many. In fact, you are crazy enough to make me long for a sweat, dissatisfied without it. I can think of few things I’d rather do. For this, I am truly grateful. And thank you also, mindset, for being crazy enough to remain idealistic and maintain your desire to chase down these dreams that sometimes seem unattainable — even if you do prove to be unrealistic. For my mind’s ability to stay positive, focused and determined, I am grateful. I know this will only continue to make the difference for me, time and time again.

I am grateful, too, for the overwhelming support and positivity that surrounds me. While my training situation may be unideal in some ways, it is absolutely exceptional in others. For one, I am lucky enough to live in an incredible community. Trails are plentiful, adventures abound, the scenery is breathtaking and the weather is amazing. The training options here in Tahoe are unparalleled, all year long. For that, I am incredibly fortunate. But beyond the terrain this place has to offer is the community behind it. Truckee is full of incredible, passionate, active people. It’s inspiring and uplifting to be surrounded by so much talent, dedication and passion. I am consistently impressed by this community. And on a more personal level, I couldn’t be more fortunate than to have the family and friends that I do. From company on my adventures to encouragement during my races, I receive so much support, both physically and mentally, from those close to me — even when they are not around. I carry that support with me, and it pushes me through the tough moments, and makes the triumphs that much sweeter. I could not ask for more.

But above all, I am so very grateful simply to be able to be this passionate about what I am doing, and the goals I’m pursuing. I know many people search a long time to find a true passion. I have undoubtedly found one, and it is the fire and desire in my life, day in and day out. I can’t imagine my life without the passion I have developed for athletics, and all of the gains I have made as a person from the pursuit of my athletic goals. I don’t know that gratitude can really quite describe the feeling, but it is definitely a start.

So as the days go on and I continue reaching for more, working for more, and desiring more, I will strive to remember my gratitude for the foundation from which I am working. Because for that, I am truly blessed.

Tower Climbing/ Time Trial

This week I made the trip to Bell Gardens, CA (East L.A. area) for a Tower Climbing Certification class.  This certification is allowing me to start working on communication towers.  I’m excited to get out of the office and get some experience working in the field.  Overall, the class was basic it incorporated repelling (controlled descending in OHSA lingo), climbing, and a rope access rescue.  My rock/tree climbing  background help me feel comfortable on the tower for the first time.  My Job for the next few months is to map existing AT&T towers and document the equipment used.

 

Mounting my first antenna on a monopole

Traveling to L.A made it a hard to get really good training in the early part of the week.  Before the in doors training day did an interval session on the treadmill in the hotel.  Friday, I joined up with Glenn, Carol, and Sam for a 25 min time trial with 4 shooting breaks at ASC. Amazingly the skiing was great, thanks Bill!  This week I’m working on speeding up my range time while keeping my accuracy.  Saturday Trish road biked while i classic roller skied for two house in Auburn on old 40.  The weather was really nice it hard to think it’s December. Hope the weather turn bad soon so we can get some more skiing in besides the 5 min loop at ASC.  Today, I met up with the biathlon crew at ASC for a last biathlon training session before i leave to Minnesota on Thursday.  Also, ASC hosted the first  full Biathlon Clinic of the session.

Phillip Violett @ top of monopole

 

Think Snow!

Kittens!

Here’s how I wake up each morning: I’m greeted by our two feral kittens, begging for food on our back doorstep. My housemates started feeding them a bit. Now they’re hooked on us. They aren’t allowed indoors as part of our renters’ agreement, but we are going to get them “fixed” . They were wrestling tonight – soooo cute. For names I’m thinking Klister and Snowball. Or maybe Pedro and Carlos.

Bros

More West Yellowstone and some home

Phillip Violett, Elias Bucher, Wyatt Fereday post classic 10K West Yellowstone, MT

The last day of West Yellowstone a few of us Far Westers raced in the 10k classic super tour.  It was about perfect conditions for a classic race blue skies and really cold snow so we had green hard wax on our skis!  Thanks to Glenn, Jeff, and Ben we had fast skis with good kick.  Overall, the West Yellowstone trip went really well a ton of great skiing with a few had efforts just what the body needed to wake up for the race season.  Thanks to Marc (of Altius Firearms), SJ, and Thor for the tasty Thanksgiving Feast it was a real treat to have a home cooked meal on Thanksgiving.

This past week returning to work was a little rough but i survived.  After the huge week of training in west, i took the first half of this week easy just a few easy distance and some strength. Friday did a little biathlon on snow with the ASC crew. Saturday had a great 4×8 min ski walking hill bounding workout with Glenn. In the afternoon i went on a tree killing adventure with the family for Christmas. It was a great success.

My next race trip is 15th-20th of December to Mnt. Itasca, MN for the IBU cup trials.