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Fall Update

Sat, Nov  15, 2008 - By Leif Zimmerman and Alexa Turzian

From Zimmermann and Turzian

Leif Zimmerman:

Hello Everyone!

The last month has been a good one for me! On the training side of things, I started in Lake Placid, NY for a two week training camp with a lot of great skiers and coaches! After a little run-in with the ground (via; flying over my handlebars and then through the air for a little while) and the six weeks to let my broken clavicle heal, LP was a great arena to bring back some volume around some of the best skiers in the world! 

Then it was back home to Bozeman in the middle of October. I got in a few days of skiing, after a surprise, 3 feet of snow. It was great to be on snow again, but it was over all too quickly with more warm, fall weather.

After only a few days home, I traveled out to Eugene, OR. To visit my girlfriend, and spend some more time at low altitude. Towards the end of my stay in OR, I was asked to participate in a study at the University of Oregon, which involved doing a Vo2Max running test. I jumped at the chance to test on the high-tech facilities of the Bowerman Building, at the illustrious Hayward Field. Although Vo2Max is a fairly objective measurement, I do think it is a good measure of individual fitness. I was interested to see how my numbers stacked up, after my little “break”. The test went very well. I stayed on the treadmill for about 15 minutes, and was at my max hart rate for about 2 minutes. I had a measure of 77.7 ml/kg/min (relative) and 5.45 l/min (absolute). This number is right around my high mark for an absolute value. I was extremely pleased with this test, mostly as conformation that I was “doing things right” as I came back from my injury.

I came home to more beautiful fall weather in Montana and just in time for a fundraising event I was putting on with two friends and fellow U.S. Ski Team Members. Keely Kelleher-Woman’s Alpine, Heather McPhie-Women’s Freestyle, and I all grew-up in the Bozeman area. We were all, also members of The Bridger Ski Foundation as juniors, so we pooled together to gather some support from our community. As the price of traveling increases and our National Team support gets cut, we need to find a way to the world cup stage. We had a silent auction/poster signing on the 1st of November and it was a big success! We met a lot of great people, visited with friends, and just had a excellent night!


To finish a very eventful month, I was privileged enough to harvest a cow elk on our property behind the house! I feel very fortunate to live in an amazing place like Montana, which allows me to enjoy so much wildlife right out my door and also to help in there management.  

Thanks for checking in with me!



Alexa Turzian:

        A Skier’s Dream

          I decided to wait and write this post until I had something really exciting and inspiring to talk about and I couldn’t think of anything better than my first ski of the year. So this afternoon I waxed up my best rock skies, slipped on my boots, hat and gloves and headed up north into the mountains to find the snow. 

I parked the car to find a small trail of packed snow leading into the woods disguised to everyone, but those of us who know what we’re looking for. The first couple of skate strides and I felt as awkward as a flamingo with flippers on. However, the experience became increasingly more familiar as I climbed over the hills and tucked into the dips rolling through this almost untouched wilderness.

It was almost too perfect to be true, every skiers dream, with the exception of the rocks, sagebrush, dirt and the occasional creek crossing. In fact, just after I finally found the confidence on my skies again, I came ripping around a sharp downhill corner and the next moment found myself flying ten feet ahead to crash face first in quite a rough landing. Nevertheless, I figured better to crash from a small rocky patch while skiing on snow then crash from an icy patch while roller skiing on the bike path as I did just the afternoon before.

So with a little dirt and snow on my knees and face I jumped right up all smiles and continued on with this wonderful adventure through the woods.

If you are a Nordic fanatic and these are feelings you have not yet had the fortune to experience luckily it’s only a few weeks before skiers from all across the country head east, west, north or south to the magical land of snow and unbearable frigidness, West Yellowstone. I’m counting the days until once again hundreds of kilometers are grinded into my skies, the cold nips at my nose and ears, and the famous Thanksgiving Dinner is spent with not my mother and father, brothers or sisters, but my closest friends and fellow skiers, people I consider almost as close to me as family can get. Can’t wait to see you all there, keep up the hard work and get excited because winter is here.



 *Alexa Turzian
   US Ski Team member
   Sun Valley, Idaho  Questions, Ideas?

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