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That's an Excellent Question - Warmup Routine for Long Distance Races
By:  Craig Storey   (2006/02/15)

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Question #1 - Warmup Routine for Long Distance Races
Keskinada is now 6 days away. There is a question I meant to ask you guys for a while. I would like to know how you guys in XCOttawa or other good racers that you know that do long distance races (~50km) typically warm up before long races. Do you find that it varies a lot for people? What type of warm up would you generally do before the 50km skate at the Keski? How long? 15, 20 more than 30 minutes warm-up? Do you do a few Ďintervalsí in warm up for such races?

This year I suspect it will start fairly fast in the A group because of the course change so we better be ready to start fast i.e. very good warm up might pay off.

The reason I am asking is that I do not personally know or meet many good skiers/racers i.e. people that are faster than me Ė NOT that I am really fast itís just that I do not know many good experienced skiers. Last year two guys from your group, Craig Storey and Wayne Dustin, beat me by 3 minutes at the Keski 50 skate. Since these guys are one notch better than me and obviously have a lot of experience in ski racing, I would appreciate to get feed back on how they would approach warm up for a race such as Keski.

Thanks - G.A.

Hi G.A.,

For me a 50km race is a rare thing. I don't train specifically for long distances. In fact I rarely ski 50km/day except in the first few weeks on snow and as often as possible at the end of the season. So I'm by no means a loppet specialist. But here's my warm-up plan for longer races...

Warm-up starts 30-40 minutes before the start after skis are selected and I've gone to the bathroom. I carry my water, dry racing hat, bib and everything I need to race with me so I can warm-up then head right to the line with <10 minutes to go, feeling warm and ready to start fast. Here's what I do:

1) 20 minutes easy zone 1, to warm up skiing quite slow.
2) 5 minutes of zone 2, skiing about 2/3 speed
3) 2-3 accelerations for 20-30s ending in an all out sprint.

This works for me to be ready for a fast start. In classic races I do my accelerations in two ways - double poling on a flat section and striding up a hill. In skating I do them mainly 1 skating since the start of most mass start races is flat or gradual uphill so and that's the technique I'll be using. You can taylor your sprints to the terrain of the opening few km.

 
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