Trampled by Turtles

Training has been a bit sporadic these past few days. I’ve done all of the races that I had scheduled for myself at the beginning of the season, and my training has reflected it this week. no direction. I’ve been doing whatever I’ve felt like doing for training, and it has been kind of fun. I’m going to try to keep some of the intensity up to stay sharp for the rescheduled Tahoe Rim Tour in April, but it’s beginning to feel like I missed race season entirely. Hopefully this new snow storm will remind me of what winter feels like.

 

Here’s a band my sister showed me a long time ago, but she has only recently convinced me they’re worth a listen. Plus, who doesn’t love a stop-motion video. The band is Trampled By Turtles, and I hope you like them http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FT8gaiNVqOM

-G-span

 

Superstitious Snow

I think that my last post and the announcement of the Great Race being cancelled finally coaxed Ullr into showing his wrath. Snow dances and ski sacrifices are just another part of the superstitions we carry with us as skiers. With the snow that came down today I was reminded of the superstitions from my other athletic passion, baseball. Here’s a passage from The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach (I’d recommend it to anybody who likes baseball and novels). The quote comes from Henry during a very important game in the novel, and goes like this:

“Deep down, he thought, we all believe we’re God. We secretly believe that the outcome of the game depends on us, even when we’re only watching– on the way we breathe in, the way we breathe out, the t-shirt we wear, whether we close our eyes as the pitch leaves the pitcher’s hand.”

I definitely subscribed to this belief when I was a kid watching sports. I still do a little. I’d want my team to win so bad that I’d make up little actions I could do to jinx the other team, and will the ball in the basket or across the corner of the plate. Am I deluded enough to claim responsibility for today’s snowstorm with my disbelief of the previous night? maybe.

-Gus

check out this mandolin playin.

It’s not spring and it’s not fall

I know this is the most overplayed theme of the year, but all this sunny weather has got me down recently. I’m not ready to do track intervals again, but that is exactly what I’ll have to do until it snows again. I’ve been pleased with how good the skiing has been on my lunch breaks at Northstar (and I have to give props to all the race organizers for pulling off high quality races), but last weekend we got the words from the higher ups that we are no longer allowed to groom at Northstar XC until more snow falls. We’re keeping a consolation 2k for people who show up, but I can’t force myself to do workouts on it. I wish I could go back to December and try this whole winter thing all over again.

I just also found out that the Great Race is going to be cancelled. My family was going to come out from Utah to do it. bummer.

For music, I’ve been really into Taylor Swift recently. I finally get America’s fascination with her. She really is America’s Sweetheart. I also recently read the Hunger Games, which will be coming out on film soon. Here’s a Taylor Swift song that’ll be on the soundtrack to the movie. It’s called Safe and Sound

~G-unit

 

 

BMT… it’s not just a sandwich at subway

Hey all,

I’m fresh off the Far West Farm Team trip to Sun Valley for the Boulder Mountain Tour. This was my first time doing the Boulder. I have to say that it lives up to its expectations as a really fun race. I won’t go as far to say that it is as good as The Great Race here in Tahoe, but it’s pretty good.

I saw so many TUNA people out on the trails, and it was fun to reunite with my friends from Utah.

I also wanted to take a minute to thank the Fereday family for hosting the Farmers and running race logistics. They did a top-notch job which was far above and beyond the call. I would have been more than happy with a spot on the floor for my sleeping bag, but they went out of their way to be superb and gracious hosts. I also wanted to thank Far West for their support on this trip. It wouldn’t have been possible for me to have made it to my first BMT without your generous support. It was a privilege to be out there representing FW.

For music, I was inspired to share a blues song with you. On this trip, there was a lot of guitar playing and blues music filling the house. It made me want to become a better musician. I just wish I had time to work, workout, and practice music. Maybe it’ll be a summer project to play more.

-Gus

Lost Highway

Yesterday I did 8×400 meter intervals on the track at UNR after getting off work. I spend a lot of time commuting these days, so lately my workouts have been around dusk. It was dark out, but suprisingly warm. I did the intervals without a shirt on (that was a first for late January).

Here is a picture from earlier this week at the view from the Swiss Hut at Northstar XC.

I’m listening to a bunch of modern country these days, but here’s a favorite oldie of mine. I memorized the lyrics to this song when I was 22 just in case I ever needed to sing something at karaoke.

see y’all at ASC for the 10k this weekend!

Gus

oh yeah, and I can’t wait to go out for the BMT next week.

Welcome Home

Mtnsaremyhome. That was the myspace screen name of a guy I met my freshman year of college at the University of Utah. And yes, we still used myspace back then. And no, it wasn’t nearly as weird then, as it is now, to have a myspace. We became friends because I spotted him in the dining hall with a Swix hat on, and I was like, “this guy has got to be a skier.” He was, and he was a really cool guy to get to know, but I just wanted to bring it up because I was thinking a lot about Utah mountains while I was at work today.

I’m working, if that’s what you wanna call it, up at the Northstar XC center. I say “if that’s what you wanna call it” because there hasn’t been much work to do there since the xc trails aren’t open for skiers due to lack of snow. I mostly sit around answering phone calls from people asking about the conditions. This one guy told me he just came from two weeks skiing at my home resort of Alta, and we both lamented the increase of ticket prices and lack of snow around the west. I don’t know that my managers would be happy if they knew how much idle chit-chat I threw into that phone-call. I can almost feel them cringing on the inside as they see money walk out the door with every hour I’m at the register with no paying customers. Their financial worries has meant short hours and long lunch breaks for me. Today during my 2.5hour lunch break, I decided to be a nordie and run on the trails to get a workout in. After about 50 mins of running on everything from dirt, to hardpacked snow, and ice; I ended up climbing to the top of Mt. Pluto. I definitely got some strange looks from snowboarders coming down the alpine runs. I even got one, “you must be ripped, bro.”

At the top I saw this advertisementBy some strange twist of fate, I was wearing my University of Utah orientation t-shirt (which earlier in the day I had been told is an inappropriate base-layer for my uniform). I thought it was funny, seeing as I was an English Major.  On my way down I gave a couple of helpful pushes to stranded snowboarders on the flats. I smiled a lot during those 2.5hours away from the grind. I was reminded, once again, that mountains are my home. Even though I’m caged up answering phones right now, I know that this job is one which allows me to work in the mountains; to work from home. And for that I’m thankful.

-Gus

For music I’m recommending Radical Face’s “Welcome Home”, but am showing you a video in which it is featured. Playing off the idea of running up mountains for fun, check out this video of Ueli Steck speed climbing (the music starts at 1:15) I have a feeling mountains are his home too.

Icy

I am now back in the ‘No (as we “biggest little city” residents affectionately call Reno). The New Years Day drive back from Salt Lake City went well. I did a Wasatch Citizens Series race at Soldier Hollow the day before I left. It was sooooo icy! SoHo has about 3ks of man-made snow coating their trails. It’s not much, but I’m thankful that it’s at least consistent and void of rocks. The race was a bit of a wake up call. Maybe it was the icy-turns on the course (speeding up only to slow down and make sure I didn’t fall off course), but I never quite felt like I was able to get up to speed. Looking to put in some good training over the next few weeks and get that killer instinct back.

 

Gus

my new favorite music youtuber. Give her a listen