Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Lauren Bradshaw's post christmas update!

Well what happened to January?! Often January can be a month of post-christmas blues and gloomy weather but fortunately for me I was lucky enough to travel to Verbier, Switzerland for my first ever ski trip! If you read my last blog I suggested that I may have some stories to tell from this trip and indeed I do….

So, my entire life I have wanted to go skiing but due to my previous commitments as a competitive ice dancer was not really allowed in case I injured myself (probably a wise move!). Therefore the excitement I felt embarking on my first trip was like a child at Christmas – I couldn’t wait to hit the slopes!
 
Day 1: I spent on the nursery slope figuring out how on earth to put on a pair of skis and indeed how to learn to stand up from falling over a million times. Using a button lift was also an interesting experience and my they do make your legs ache!

Day 2: I decided it would be a sensible choice to have lessons so stumbled upon a nice instructor who took me down my first blue runs showing me how to link up my turns and control my speed. We had a complete white out that day and so the safety of having an instructor was very reassuring.

Day 3: It was my friends 30th birthday so we had a fun day planned. I spent the morning in lessons with my nice instructor who turned out not to be so nice after deciding he would push my ability and started me on red runs and unbeknown to me took me down some black run! I had learnt to parallel turn, parallel stop and tackle the moguls – I can honestly say I was pretty petrified for most of this lesson but felt exhilarated and immensely proud that I had conquered a black route on my 3rd day of skiing!
I believe that my underlying strength and endurance from triathlon along with my balance and technical ability from figure skating really helped me to pick up skiing so quickly. After my lesson my thighs were on fire and decided to meet my friends for lunch only to discover that one of them had dislocated her knee cap and had been helicoptered off the mountain!! After the trip to hospital to collect the injured friend we decided to put the trauma of the day behind us and get on with celebrating the 30th birthday. We had all packed animal onesies and decided to hit the apr├Ęs ski dressed in our amazing costumes (I was an owl!) –much to the delight of the Verbier nightlife we were a big hit!!!
 
For the remainder of the week I returned back to the blue and red slopes and consolidated my new found skiing skills and made the most of the catered chalet food, wine and spa facilities!

I have almost definitely caught the skiing bug and I am already hoping that I may be able to sneak in a last minute long weekend before the end of the season and have already starting planning next year’s trip! Over at Progress we offer ski assessments which looking back in retrospect would have been ideal, especially for my friend who dislocated her knee – as ultimately this almost certainly occurred due to a lack of strength and stability.


So what next….?
I have a very busy spring coming up with a cycling trip to Majorca so I have been busy putting the miles in on my bike around the Cambridgeshire, Essex and Bedfordshire countryside along with many a sweaty evening in my garage sat on my turbo trainer (an indoor training system that you attach your bike to in awful weather!).
 
I really want to build up the miles as we will be averaging around a 100 miles per day on pretty mountainous terrain – therefore I do not want to burn out! I have also been building up the mileage in the running in preparation for the Cambridge Half Marathon on March 9th where I’m hoping to run a PB of sub 1 hour 30 minutes. Progress will be sponsoring the half marathon and offering post-race sports massage so I’m hoping my colleagues can flush my legs out afterwards!!

(Will be nice to be the patient for a change!) I’m also starting to build my swimming fitness up too – however I have a niggling shoulder injury at the moment so I need to make sure I practice as I preach and do my rehabilitation exercises to keep it nice and strong!

Until next time……happy training =)