BY TIM BURKE
So, you might have noticed that the blog has gone a little neglected over the last few months. The truth is, I find the summer months to be the toughest time of the year to find worthwhile blogging material. It's not that the summer is boring; it's just that our daily training routine at this time of year leaves little time or energy for much else. Combine this with the fact that I have been pretty much stationary here in Lake Placid for the last few months, and that’s why the old blog has grown a little dusty.
I always laugh in the summer when I run into people who ask me if I am back into my full training routine or if I get the summer off. I think you would be shocked how often I actually get this question in the summer. Everyone is always surprised by my answer that I train more hours in the summer than any other time of year. While the summer might not necessarily hold the most intense efforts, it's definitely the time of year when we log the most hours of training.
A typical training day for me in the summer will include four, five or even six hours of physical training in a day with daily shooting training on top of that. For example, I might start the day with a three-hour run, follow that with a big lunch and some recovery and then head out for some shooting training and a two-hour roller ski. The hard part about these type of training days is that you have to repeat this process day after day, week after week and month after month. These big training months are what will ultimately allow me to stay fit all winter long during the race season, when I have to drastically cut down on my training hours and race three times a week.
Although this training process might sound a little monotonous, if you’re someone like me, who likes to spend time outside, this routine can be bliss. These long training days give me the opportunity to get out and explore everything that the Adirondack Mountains have to offer. From the numerous mountain runs, endless back roads for roller skiing and technical trails for mountain biking, the Adirondacks are the perfect place for a biathlete in the summer. My teammate Lowell Bailey and I often joke around on these training days about spending “just another day at the office.” It sounds funny, but it’s actually true, and that's what makes the summer months so enjoyable for me.
The summer has not only been about endless training days. Besides my numerous fishing breaks, I had the opportunity to go out to LA and shoot some promotional material with my new sponsor, TD Ameritrade. TD Ameritrade is an official sponsor for the U.S. Olympic Committee and the 2014 and 2016 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams. It felt great to have a little break from my normal day-to-day schedule and do something totally different. It was also great to meet the other TD Ameritrade sponsored athletes and feel everyone’s excitement about the Sochi Games. This positive energy was contagious and I came back to Lake Placid feeling energized and refreshed for another big training block.
Fortunately for me, and my blogging material, travel season is about to get underway with a training camp in Germany. This is an annual training camp for our team and it's always one of my favorites. I'm looking forward to the opportunity for some new training sights and to train alongside some of the best biathlon teams in the world. Although we have great training opportunities here at home, I always think it's important to branch out and see how your competition is preparing.
Thanks for checking in!