After spending the past season training with Carleton in Ottawa, I had to deal with a huge adjustment when I returned to my hometown, Deep River. Coming from the nice ski-friendly city of Ottawa to the small town of Deep River meant no more training partners or team practices for me. After a few weeks, I quickly got used to the different training style and places that the town offered.
Over the past few years I`d carefully developed the longest loop around town for rollerskiing, which was just less than an hour long. However, during the spring and summer many of the roads in town were torn to replace the pipes below, which quickly blocked off most of my loop for construction. As the summer and construction progressed I was restricted to different stretches of road, some barely longer than a kilometre. Most of the time I was confined to only flat roads, and had no chance to train on hills. Now that I`m back in Ottawa, it will take me some time to get used to climbing, but the flat training was an excellent way to improve my upper body strength, which has been always been my weakness.
Not my favourite thing to see at the bottom of a hill.
The town was also covered with tiny strips like these, which were just wide enough to cause trouble.
While the rollerskiing was pretty dull, Deep River still offered the alpine ski hill as an excellent place for ski striding or plyometrics. This was one of my favourite places to do intervals, as the place has several different trails leading up the hill, each with its own length and steepness, which incorporated a lot of variety into the intervals. The ski hill is also located right on the river, so it matched excellent training with awesome scenery.
Looking out on the Ottawa River.
This trail, Mambo, was my favourite one of the hill. It’s a long, curving trail that slowly climbs without any steep hills.
Another great place for ski striding, or running, is the cross-country ski trails located on the other side of town. With rolling terrain, it is an awesome place to train on hills and is much more fun than running along roads. However, the trails aren’t a nice place to train in the fall or late summer, since there are daily bear sightings in the area.
After a summer of good training in Deep River, I’m excited to come back to all the great training Ottawa has to offer.