World cup round 3 – 6-6-6 and a win!

4 09 2018

I am just starting to recover from the very tough world cup weekend in Norway with 4 races within 48 hours – but what a weekend! 6th in all individual races and a win in the relay where I also managed to win the first leg.

My shape has been good since WOC and training has been going on just as planned. The weekend before the World Cup I ran a 12km race in Idre (2XU Idre Fjällmaraton). It was a race with a mix of terrains: from asphalt and gravel roads, to small paths, pure mountain forest and marshes. I won the race clearly, as it unfortunately was not so many high level competitors on the short course, but still it was a sign of a good shape.

Photos: Nisse Schmidt / Anna-Lena Andersson

The whole summer I’ve been focusing on sprint and flat asphalt running, but after some high speed forest orienteering sessions the past weeks I noticed that the shape in forest was there as well, so I went to Norway with a good self confidence.

The day before the long I woke up with a sore throat so I skipped the model event and slept more or less the whole day. And when I didn’t sleep I ate. Somewhere inbetween two-hour nap 2 and 3 the soreness disappeared. I took a walk in the evening (round the building x3) and then went to bed for the night and woke up feeling ready for the long distance.

I have not been completing many long distance races the last couple of years due to both injuries, sicknesses and selections. This means I am not so very used to the 1:15 000 scale, but the map and the terrain during this world cup long distance was clear enough to read and much a like what I am used to from Gothenburg so this was not as big problem as I may have expected. I had some smaller hestitations the first 4 controls, but got into it more and more. I felt strong in the flatter parts and also in the heavy marshes as I am used to the running technique which is needed in the grass. I did a small mistake on the second last control, but I still felt that I had done a good race when crossing the finish line. It ended up with my best ever long distance result internationally with a 6th place – the previous best was 8th on EOC in Sweden 2012, so it was on time.

The next day it was time for a prologue in the morning and then a pursuit in the afternoon. I did a stable race in at the prologue and the result was 6th again (shared with Marianne Andersen). However I was more than 2 minutes after Tove, but it was tighter to the girls before me, but also to the ones behind. I have learnt to like head-to-head running so I was looking forward to the pursuit. Again some smaller hesitations in the beginning of the course, but managed to catch the ones who went out as 4th and 5th, but got caught by Sabine who went out as 8th. Marianne got a small gap and disappeared to the 8th, and me and Sabine splited up in two different route choices. However we came together again, but I still thought Marianne was before, even though we now have passed her. During the arena passing I did not get I was 4th, and also not that the big chasing group was that close behind. I ran very well and offensive towards the 10th control and got a gap on Sabine. Unfortunately I did a face plant on the way to the 11th, lost my direction and had to change route choice. I did not execute it well and lost one minute. When running towards the 11th control I saw a big group coming from the right and I just managed to grab the tail of the group. I had to accept the new race conditions and try to be smart. However I was too far down in the group to manage to get Kamilla Olaussons back when she chose an own route to the 13th. The girls before me did a good orienteering job and it was hard to get a better position… I tried towards the second last but got stuck between some trees just before the control and was only 8th there. I know I have a strong sprint finish, but it was a little bit too rough way out to the field so Marianne got a too big gap, but I did manage to pass two runners and get the 6th place – once again. Three times 6th – the number of the beast – and very stable individual performances. No race was perfect, but I am happy to be able to do that good forest orienteering again and reach the podium twice!

15 hours later it was time for the last race – the relay. I was selected to run the first leg in the first team – finally I was going to run a relay in the same team as Karro and Tove. I started offensive as I knew my shape was good. I got into it very well to the first control but got a little bit too relaxed towards the 2nd and did a small mistake. No stress, I got back into it and managed to get back into the lead at the 5th control. I pushed hard towards the arena and also on the road after. I felt that it started to split up behind, but then I got really tired in the uphill. Luckily Lisa in our 2nd team had a strong part and I could just stay in her back and read my map. When we had reached the top I felt my legs came back to me again – I still felt very fresh in the flat parts, so I tried to keep up the speed, but also stay close to the map to not to any stupid mistakes in the end. No control mistakes, but a small direction mistake out from the 2nd last, but I could run offensive down the slope and still sprint into a victory of the first leg and send out Karro in a leading position. A perfect start and a perfect end as both Karro and Tove did very well and we won with almost 2,5 minutes! A world cup victory – a perfect end on an awesome weekend! It didn’t look good at Thursday morning, but it shows that things can change rather quick… 🙂

Photos: Stefan Månsson / WOC 2019 Karl Orud/Martin Nielsen

All in all a super weekend as so many runners in our team did so well. Sweden took all victories but one (not the men’s relay – but it was a close call as they were 2nd and 3rd, only some seconds behind). The terrain for next year’s world championships seems to suit us well, and I am eager to do the forest job which is needed to perform in the area again in a little less than one year.

Link to results, GPS and maps.





WOC in Latvia – 5th and PB!

25 08 2018

It is soon 2 weeks since WOC ended and 3 weeks since my only race during the week. It is more than time to write some words about it, as it is soon time for the next competition – the world cup round 3 in Norway next weekend. Why it has been taken this long to write is partly because of the “WOC depression” that always hit me, but also because I have had too much to do. More about this later.

WOC – world championships in Latvia, the main goal of the season. I was selected (only) for the sprint in Riga, but was substitute for all other races (but the long distance). The troubling winter and spring (many small injuries and a relationship break-up) affected my training why my shape was not good enough to qualify for more distances this year. Actually I qualified for the middle, but as I felt more joy for the sprint and Sara for the middle we did an exchange.

From the second week in June I focused my training with the goal to perform on the sprint the 4th of August. I contacted my “old” coach Ola Jodal and together we set up a daily training schedule which I really believed in. I was also very motivated for each session as I felt quite fast that my body responded well. I was also eager to work hard with my sprint routines which I had started up during the winter but not really was able to continue due to some injuries. I went to several camps (Örebro with a small part of the national team and Thierry, the national team precamp in Latvia and Chamonix/Annecy in France with Karro & Tove). All those camps with a perfect mix of technical and physical training and all of them went on very well. With one week to go to my WOC start all sessions the last six weeks had went on almost exactly as planned. I did my last really hard session at Friday one week before WOC. This also went well, but the following days when I started to rest I also felt a little sick. Probably it was due to the warm weather and some smaller dehydration, but it is never fun when you get that feeling just some days before the most important race of the year. But, no worries, I felt ready when I left for Latvia at Wednesday – i just had to take some more rest – which also can be good as it sometimes is hard to dare to rest enough! I enjoyed to meet up with the team and I felt good vibes coming.

Saturday and sprint day. Probably my only WOC performance this year. I felt so light during the qualification warm up and even though some nervousness hit me right at the start the race was controlled and relaxed. I became 2nd in my heat and felt ready for the final. Inbetween the races I tried to sleep for a while but could feel the pulse in my entire body and that is when you really feel it is the WOC day. However, I felt more relaxed when entering the quarantine and soon it was time to race!

The race was good. I had some small stress in the beginning when realising it is a lot of people in the city (a bike blocking a passage to the 3rd control et c), but got into it quite fast. From the 4th control I felt in very good control and all decisions I made was active. When looking back at the race I have taken some wrong routes (nr 3, nr 8 and nr 16) but during the race I did not take notice about this except from to the 16th control. I was so tired in the end of the course, and had been running with some chest pain (the kind you get when you for example have eaten too close to the race) for the last minutes. I saw the straight route choice but chose the one to the right as it looked more easy to execute. I did not dare to go straight as I found it a bigger risk to take a wrong turn as I felt too tired to read the map.  I then did some small hesitations before the 16th control and also at the last control with some seconds lost, but I fought all the way to the finish line. At the moment I crossed it I felt happy about my race. The minute I laid on the ground after the finish line I felt that I had done as planned and it felt good. I was also happy to get the final result which was 5th – a big personal best result at WOC. It was great to finally succeed individually – at the competition when all the best took part and when all runners do everything to perform their best. That is cool. And the best thing – it feels start I’ve just started my journey  – even if that is a lie as I’ve been in this circus for some time now, haha – but still, there is more to come.

The day after I was ready to run the sprint relay if I was needed, but both Karro and Tove felt fresh so after fixing Karros hair I went out on a second jog instead of entering a new quarantine. My legs felt so damn good and I was not really prepared to the feeling of wanting so much to run that sprint relay, as I totally had no difficulties about the selections. I just wanted to run as it is the most fun thing you can do, and it is even more fun when your legs are flying. So, this feelings was a bit new to me (also because I more or less always run at least 3 races during a championship week). These feelings continued the whole week. My body felt super, and I was ready for each race if changes would happen, but it did not. However, I had not expected to run anything more than the sprint, so I still had a very good week. A lot of cheering of course, but also some fun chit chat trainings with the boys, a visit to the (fake) sea with some beach volley and fika.

Photos: Sara Hagström

At Friday when I knew that I would not race anything I ran the middle course. Thierry put out controls and we simulated a WOC race as good as we could. I had also not been checking out any analysis about the competition from Tuesday and not really been looking at the map except from some short live GPS looks at the big screen during the competition. Already then I had decided that I wanted to run the course later.

I ran, it went very well, almost no mistakes and still a strong body. Towards the last control Thierry and William cheered as hell telling I was “going to made the podium”. I sprinted all out (it really felt as a competition!) and then William told I had “beaten” the best time. I had 31:40 – however with a start a little too close to the starting point, but instead I ran too long during the arena passage. Of course it is hard to say how much tracks it was when I ran compared to the competitors during the WOC middle and how much knowledge I hsd got from following the competition at the arena, so you can of course not make a true comparison – but for me this was good for my self confidence – to really believe I can go all the way with a good race. As I have the best national team coach in the world he set up a prize giving ceremony with medal, flowers and national anthem. Haha, so much fun.

Thank you national team members for another great week. Big thanks to the coaches, physios and the chef! Thank you Karro for being the best room mate. Thank you Ola for helping with my training schedule – I think we reached the maximum of what we could do with 7 weeks! Looking forward to continue the work! And thank you Thierry for helping me with so much more than just the technical stuff.

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It was tough to get home, but I soon planned a tight schedule with lots of stuff to do to get distracted. I still felt light in my body so I started up the training quite fast and had a good training day in Jönköping with my club towards SM last Saturday and I also ran a local middle distance competition at home that weekend. Additionally I put my apartment out for rent, so know there will be some months with the bag. This due to that I will spend parts of September and October on the orienteering school in Hallsberg as i have a practical work period in my pedagogical studies at the university. I am looking forward! I have also spending a lot of time with friends and among that a visit in Stockholm at Karros place. #life

At the moment I am in Idre Fjäll, in the north of Sweden together with my nice sponsor 2XU compression. Today I will run a 12k race here and enjoy the mountains. Tomorrow I go back to Göteborg before going to the World Cup in Norway on Wednesday. It will be fun to compete internationally again and excited to see if my shape will continue to be good…





Shaping up in France

24 07 2018

In the beginning of the summer I was selected to run the sprint at WOC in Latva. Or… I was selected for the middle, but Sara and me did an exchange as I was more up for the sprint and vice versa. After a successful sprint camp in Örebro I went to Latvia and our precamp. Had some good sprint days and also spent some time in the forest as I am substitute for some of the forest disciplines.

After some days at home I went to France for a training vacation with Karro and Tove. We didn’t want to spend the whole summer at home or in Latvia just training for WOC, and France seemed like a good option to still get good training but in nice surroundings and to feel some holiday vibes as well.

I arrived some hours before the others and went for a long run up Crêt de la Neige, outside Geneva. Perfect start of the trip, and the Jura mountains are wonderful. Then I picked the girls, and we drove to our first destination: Chamonix. We had rented an apartment in town with a great view of Mount Blanc. Then there were days with training, both track intervals, flat thresholds and long runs up up and up! It is crazy how you can trick your mind to not feel tired just because you drown in the amazing views.

When we were in Chamonix France celebrated its national day. However, it may been too many tourists in town as we did not see that much of celebrating. Or perhaps everyone was waiting for the next day, the World Cup final in football? How great to be in France when France is playing for gold? I was looking forward to this and we planned the day to be in town at 5 pm when the game started. Before that we took the bahn up to Aiguille the midi, 3842 masl. Not the best way to recover after a threshold session, and it was a bit cloudy, but still cool to visit that place (together with half of Japan)… Then it was time for the game and the athmosphere was awesome as France played well and later on won. Me and Karro had dressed up in French jackets and tried to hang on with the celebrations as best as we could! Felt a bit French for a while ;)…

france 2

The morning after we left Chamonix and did a sprint and track training in Saint-Julien-en-Genevois before heading to St Jorioz south of Annecy where we had an apartment just by the lake. Now it was Tour de France time in town and the 10th stage passed on the road outside our place which meant the road was closed from early in the morning. Therefore we couldn’t take the car and go to one of the TDF-climbings as we wanted, and instead we ran up a mountain close to where we lived and then continued to the starting place of the tour. It said swosch, and then all the cyclists had passed, but still it was interesting to take part of the big tour de France circus. Now we had got an enough load of testosterone sports, so the following day we went to Chambéry to show the city people some sprint orienteering. We simulated a WOC day with qualification and final and I had two good runs. The city was perfect for sprint and we could feel the vibes from the Swedish success at the WOC sprint 2011 with Linnéa, Helena and Lena top 3 and Anders as 2nd. Way to go!

The last days in Annecy was spent with a spectacular long run up La Tournette (2351 masl) with a panorama view that could make anyone crying of happiness. We also tried a Via Ferrata (first time for me and Karro). Hanging on this mountain wall also almost made us cry, but not due to happiness, but longing for mama (due to fear of hights…). At friday we ran a last sprint in Annecy town, which is just beautiful and with lots of nice coffee and ice cream places. Before heading home on Saturday I had a great threshold session along the biking road by the Annecy lake. Just flat and straight – when did I start to love that? Would have been great to do a 10k race there. Probably a good way to set a record :).

Thanks to Thierry and Göran who fixed maps and planned some courses to us, and thanks to the french people who helped putting out controls for the sprints. Valuable for our sprint preparations towards WOC. Merci beaucoup!

Now I am home again, and it is just 12 days until WOC starts at the 4th of August.

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Could it BEE more beautiful?





2nd at Venla with #gmokbabes

19 06 2018

The Jukola weekend in Finland is over for this year and once again it was some memorable days. As usual the surroundings were great: sunshine, a nice staying by a lake in the forest with the club and a cool competition terrain!

We went there on Thursday and got out in the forest and realised it looked like we have expected. ”Just as Tibro”. Then eating dinner and preparation meeting with the whole squad (4 venla teams and 2 jukola teams). The night ended with a movie task where we in groups of 4 made a short movie with the theme ”anything”. The result of the filming was going to be shown the day after…

At Friday we once again went out in the forest. A bit more tricky area, but still I got a good flow. The last runners arrived and after a relaxing afternoon and evening with team photos and team meetings we watched the movies from the day before. So much fun and the team spirit was on top!

Saturday – relay day! 4 venla teams on the starting line (for the first time in GMOK history). Line for our 2nd team showed the zebra legs were fast that day by being in the lead to the starting point. Lisa was running for my team and she followed our tactics by being in control all the time. There were some really fast runners pushing hard on the 1st leg (smahing the estimated times by far) so Lisa sent out Anna on the 2nd leg as nr 33, +2:42. Line for the 2nd team was 84 (+5:58), Marcia for 4th team 146 +8:16 and Jolanta for 3rd +8:20 at 152nd spot. A stable start!

Anna is the 2nd leg specialist and she overtook many positions as usual. I am also always very confident when Anna runs as she almost never do any big mistakes. She kept it together this time as well, just a small mistake at one control. She sent me out as number 13, +2:55 after leading MS Parma. In our 2nd team Moa E did a fantastic race (having the best time on the 2nd leg) and passed 67(!) teams up to position 17, actually only less than 40 seconds behind us in the 1st team. So cool! Viktoria for our 3rd team had a tough day, but Moa P for the 4th team did a nice comeback after an injury and changed over as 99th.

anna venla rönnols

Finally it was my turn. Had some runners going out both close before and after, but never saw anyone of them after the starting point :). It meant I pushed hard from the start as the course was so short. I used my very restricted finish vocabulary to ask the slow runners from earlier legs to get out of the way towards the first controls, and it worked out quite well. The flat area in the beginning was a bit scary. Was a bit unsure towards the 2nd control as it was a lot of forking in this area. However, I stayed in control and got it nicely. Was still all alone towards the 3rd, first common control. Afterwards I saw that my forking was the only one giving the opportunity to go left around the big pit and therefore I did not see anyone else and this was also a bit longer. Towards the TV-control on 5th i saw SNO and thereafter also Stora Tuna who had been going out 1:15 ahead of me. Perfect. The 8th control was the only one really tricky, but I was in full control and did not have any problems with that. However, I stressed a bit out of the 9th, not checking where I passed the track and Tuna passed me again. However, I realised it fast and could run up her back close after. We then pushed hard towards the finish, and I could send out Judith as nr 7, 3:03 behind the leading OL Norska, but in the back of Tuna and Tove. I was 3rd at the 3rd leg, so it was a good run! Runa for our 2nd team did well, and sent out Kristine as nr 21 very close to IFK Göteborg 2 who was the best second team at that moment. Kerstin for the 4th team picked some spots to 96th and Hanna for the 3rd picked some teams up to 125.

It was then awesome to follow Judith on the last leg, smashing through the field, passing team by team when they were doing mistakes. Tove was running incredibly good for Tuna so the victory was unreachable, but it was a great feeling to jump the fence and wait for Judith to come to the last control as 2nd!!! She saw us waiting before entering the run in, and was so surprised. We showed and screamed we were 2nd, and she could almost not believe it! Finally we succeeded at Venla as well after being 2nd two times at 10-mila and 3rd once the last 5 years, but ”only” 5th as best at Venla. It was also great to see how our 2nd team continued to run so well and ran in as 21st team, and the best second team, with only young runners who really have the future ahead. I am very proud of how we all stuck to the plan and how we ran during the relay! The 3rd team ended as 110 and the 4th team unfortunately DSQ, but still good performances by these girls.

After the prize giving we celebrated with some prosecco, sauna and late night swim in the lake by our house. A great end of an awesome day with the fantastic gmokbabes gang! You are the best and now we will go for the victory for sure!

Thank you coaches for all your help before and during the weekend. GMOK is well organised as always. Also thanks to the men teams who were cheering, supporting and running well themselves! The future looks bright.

Photos: Robbie Anderson, Mikael Eliasson, Moa Gustafsson, Lars Rönnols, Jukola 2018

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EOC 2018 – 2xSilver

17 05 2018

I went to Ticino in southern Switzerland with no expectations at all. This winter/spring has been a completely mess and I was just happy to get into the championship bubble together with some of my best friends.

The achilles problems which I got in the middle of february gave me one month without any running at all and then two weeks going from 5 min running up to 30. Then I was able to start pushing a bit and running orienteering again. In the middle of april I was ready for 2 of our 3 selections races. I had to skip the long distance as I wasn’t ready for running 3 days in a row. The sprint and the middle races went mostly as planned even though I lacked bit of a speed. A 6th and a 4th place gave me selections for sprint, middle and forest relay (2nd team) at the EOC.

The following week after the selection races I felt that my shape became better and better for each running session. However, my throat got sore 4 days before 10-mila. 2 days with no training and then two days of jogging to feel if 10-mila was possible to do or not. The body felt good, but the virus had hit my vocal cords and I lost my voice completely. It meant running 10-mila was okay, but talking not okay. (Not the easiest task for me…) ”Luckily” we weren’t fighting in the 10-mila top this year and I could avoid interviews… 😉 GMOK-babes team 1 will come back stronger on Venla, but our 2nd-5th team delivered!

However, the problems with my throat the last 2 weeks before the EOC sprint gave me no possibilities to do any tapering sessions. Once again nothing went on as planned. Well, all in on technical performances and no other expectations.

So.

14th in the sprint after a really relaxed qualification in the morning where everything went smooth, both technically and physically. However, the increased summer heat in the afternoon (almost 30 degrees) and the lack of sessions where I pushed it to the maximum the last months made the final very tough. The breathing didn’t work as it is supposed to and it gave me really sore legs and feeling of dizziness. This was probably related to the coughing I’ve had the last weeks, but luckily it disapperad the following days. Technically the final was okay, except from one bigger route choice mistake to the 5th control and also a very defensive start. The result and the distance behind Tove (1.33) is far from what I’m aiming for and what I am capable of. But, it has its explanations. Accept, and move on.

Middle distance. 26th. Both the qualification and final was tough fights against my mind who didn’t feel prepared or ready for pushing hard in the forest. I got too defensive and not in championship competition mode. This made me very disappointed at myself. I mean, the last thing you do is stop fighting. In the qualification I made one huge mistake in the slope, but kept it together the rest of the course and could qualify rather easily on 8th spot. In the final I tried to be more aggressive, but the slippy slope mastered me and I lost my plan and did many mistakes. I just wanted to go home for some months to train properly and get back at it, and not do this again this week. Why run and feel totally unprepared. What will it give? It felt that I had hit the bottom.

Some hours later. ”Lina, are you up for the sprint relay tomorrow?”

Eeeeeh??? Say what?

Tove had twisted her ankle during the middle final and didn’t know if she was able to run. Probably not. I was asked to be the substitute. Okay. I felt in my badest shape for a long time. My self confidence was at the bottom. I was the substitute for the worlds best orienteer who some days before had smashed the sprint final with a 24s win. Okay, I had some (mental) work to do the following hours, because of course I said yes. I mean, this may be my only chance to run in a team with Emil, Jonas and Karro. Let’s do this!

The morning after I got the information that I will run for sure. A nice team jog, some relaxing hours in bed, some music, some hair styling and then entering the quarantine. I realised I was super nervous, but there was nowhere I would rather be than there, with my team.

The start of the race didn’t go as planned. I lost my focus for some seconds and didn’t see my first control so I got far down in the group. Then the hill started and I could see Judith disappear in the front. I didn’t want to push too hard in the uphil with a big risk to hit the wall. This was smart, but still I didn’t keep it together technically and did some mistakes. Luckily I could see all the top teams except from Switzerland and I was able to push really hard the last loop and gain many positions. I changed over to Emil as 3rd, but way behind Judith and Switzerland (+1.08) and the chances for a win was already lost. Not happy with my technical performance, but still an okay first leg compared to the others. Emil ran increadibly good, and Jonas and Karro did also well and we could run in at 2nd position. Way behind Switzerland, but way ahead any other team. A stable team effort, and I was very happy to be at the podium together with these three freaks getting a silver medal! What a bonus! The whole day was so much fun!

The morning after I felt a bit hung over because of bad sleep and many tough races the last days. I was on my way down to the breakfast when I once again was met by the question. ”Lina, are you up for the first leg in the first team tomorrow? Tove is not able to run.” Let’s go with the flow. Yes, of course. I felt ran over by a tractor or something, but getting the opportunity to run the first leg once again in a great team – the chances are not that many – so of course I will do that!

Once again, some work to do to get some forest self confidence. Running sprint relay first legs is something I am very comfortable with as I’ve done it very good many times, but in the forest I didn’t feel as sure of myself. But as I want to run it at WOC – the best preparation for that is do to it at EOC.

Thierry helped me to get a relaxed attitude towards the challenge, and once again I managed to enjoy the day completely. Even the warm up was kind of fun. I was defensive right in the start, but with full focus on getting the first control. I got it nicely and had a good position at the 3rd control which was the first common. Then I had the same forking as Judith and it felt very comfortable with her in front of me #gmokbabespower, even though the speed was high. Then it was many unforked controls in a row which suprised me, but I managed to hang on to the group led my Judith. The speed was very high on the road down to the arena passing, and the group extracted. I lost the sight of Judith (Switzerland), but passed some teams who was more tired than me. I lost some time on the longer and trickier forking after arena passage compared to some other teams, but I realised it was perfect that I had that forking as I was able to close the gap again to the teams having the short one. I could sprint into finish as 5th, only 29 seconds behind. I was totally exhausted, sending out Sara, but so happy with a well executed first leg, doing what I wanted to do.

Sara did a stable race which was impressive after having a tough EOC, and Karro got a nice hunting challenge. Karro ran an incredible race and passed the arena as 3rd, but on silver medal position, which a big gap behind. Sara and me prepared for celebrating in the run in, but then we heard she is doing a mistake. We heard that the big chasing group has passed her and that she is 15 seconds behind on 7th position. Oh my god, NO! This is not happening… I was so nervous, but I know Karros abilities to push so hard after a mistake and that no one will beat her in the sprint. Next live pictures from the 2nd last control and we could see her in the position right behind Maja (Denmarks). Holy moly. And the rest is history… 😉 What a sprint finish and what an awesome feeling to win a silver medal like this! With Sara and Karro! I have never felt so vigorous as when I jumped all the fences from the VIP area to get acess to the finish area to crash at Karro behind the finish line. So many emotions and so much joy! We decided that this relay day should feel as a party and if we do as planned and if it gives us a medal, we should CELEBRATE! A medal at EOC is big! I could watch those scenes over and over again… 🙂

I could not dream of ending this championship in another way. It felt in many ways like a win, even though we got beaten big time by the Swiss. But, after this spring (which more or less has sucked completely), it was just awesome to drown in those happy emotions for a while.

The last day of EOC I ran up a mountain with Lilian, Jonas and Eric just enjoying life. Then cheering at the long distance and then hiting the splash and spa banquet. This was so wierd, but so much fun!

As always. Big thanks to the team and coaches. It was a roller coaster for the most of us this week, but still I enjoyed it completely. Swedish team ❤ I can put another memorable week into my back pack. And two relay silver medals. Who would have thought that?

I caught a small cold after EOC which wasn’t a surprise as many in the team felt some kind of illness. I am eager to get back into training and build up some running shape and also some running style (it didn’t look good at EOC…). I cross my fingers I could start up already this weekend as there are just a couple of weeks to our WOC selections.

 

 

 

 

 





Back to the bike

7 03 2018

After Alicante I continued with a lot of training at home. The broken hand was not a big problem (except in the gym), and I could complete many sessions both in and outside the forest. I felt strong on my threshold sessions and felt ready to soon start up with some speed sessions. However, the snow arrived and I forgot how sensitive my lower legs are, as I started to feel some stiffness in my left achilles. I stopped almost immediately from running and I thought one week of rest and massage was enough. I went to the MOC Camp in Berga (Spain), but started to feel pain during my first sprint jog and the pain increased during the run. After I felt pain just by walking, which I’ve never experienced before. I realised that no more running was possible that week. I got some good alternative training sessions at the Berga Resort gym before I flew home some days earlier than planned and without completing any of the speed sprint sessions that I wanted. Since then I’ve spent many hours on the spinning bike, in the water or at the gym. I have not dared to try the achilles for running yet, as I believe it needs some more time to recover and build up some strength.

Well. One step forward, two steps back. It has been some struggeling during the winter. First the inflammation in my foot, then the broken hand and now the left achilles. It aint easy and once again my mental skills must work hard. At least the weather conditions have been on my side as it has not been so motivational to look outside (because of the snow and ice), as the indoor choice not has been too bad, but still… I am in it for the running, not for hour after hour on a bike which doesn’t move a millimeter… I keep my fingers crossed that the pain will disappear with the snow, and I hope it will be soon!

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Wetvest party in South Africa #suitup #likeaninja





Alicante & a broken hand

16 02 2018

After coming home from South Africa I wrote an exam in a Sport Medicine course and then began my pedagogical studies which will last for  three(!) years. (The studies are only offered as half time studies as you are supposed to have  a work in the side.) I take these courses to be able to get the teacher identification which is a requirement in Sweden if you want to work as a sport coach in a high school/college or similar.  This means I must stay at the university for some more years even though I actually finished my bachelor in sport coaching this passed autumn.

Well, after two campus days I was free to go abroad again. This time to join the national team in Alicante. The others had already been there for a week when I arrived and I had seen plenty of photos showing great training sessions, so I was eager to take part.

I started off with three sessions the first afternoon, two contour courses (one at night) and one strength session. It was nice to get back to the sand dunes and the demanding terrain if you lose focus. The day after we travelled into the mountains to run some good sprint sessions. Qualification and final one day, and a sprint relay simulation the next. The villages were hilly with many narrow streets, just as sprint should be. I was not into it in the qualification, but managed to do it much better in the final, where I performed a good race. The nexy day’s sprint relay was demanding, and I did not find the sprint relay flow I had the last season, but my team mate Gustav ran well and we took the victory anyway… Then back to the dunes and many more sessions with lots of controls. I tried to put my focus on some special tasks for each training, and thanks to many follow-ups by Thierry I felt that I developed quite a lot during the week. It was for sure a good starting-point on my technical development for 2018.

We trained a lot, but as always there are some time for some fun inbetween. This time go karting. It was so much fun and as close to Super Mario Kart as I’ve so far been. Except from a big hit from behind and a very cocky face (no name mentioned) it was a great time!

The morning after, I went for the usual morning jog. 8 minutes slow jog down to the beach, some core exercises and then back to eat breakfast. The exercises became competetive and after a hit, I suddenly I felt pain in my left little finger. I thought it was just a hit, and ignored it for some minutes and tried to focus on some photographing in the sunrise. However, the pain got bigger and bigger and I got really dizzy realising something was wrong when I watched my finger pointing a bit to the outside and pulsating. I asked our physio what may have happened, and we thought that I may had sprained a joint or something. I know that if you sprain your ankle, it can hurt as hell for some minutes and then you can run again, so I thought it was the same now. We jogged back and I eat my breakfast only using my right hand as it still hurt big time. Then I looked at my hand and realised it now was very swollen. (Not the finger, but at the finger bone in the middle part of the hand.) I showed it again to the physios and they could easily say that there must be a injury on the bone…. Shit. Off we went to the hospital and after many turns there, and in total 8(!) hours of waiting I could get the plaster I needed. The x-ray showed the 5th metakarpal bone was broken in two parts… However, I managed to get back in time to be able to go for the night training, so off I went, with the plaster, but with my thumb free so I could put on my compass and actually also hold the map in my left hand so it was almost as before. The day after was the day for travelling home, but as it wasn’t until the afternoon I still got the possibility to run two training sessions this day as well.

So, in the large perspective a really successful camp with lots of hours, but still with a lot of qualitative technical sessions. I am eager to continue working on my technical skills which somewhat have been priority number 2 for the last two years.

The broken hand was for sure nothing I needed as I have now spent 3,5 weeks with a half plastered hand. However, the running have not been affected from this, apart from that I’ve needed to be very careful in the steep parts of the forest as I have only been able to use my right hand if I fall or if i had to drag me up somewhere. Though, I have completed a training camp in south Halland/north Skåne (last Thursday to Sunday) and also been running a night cup masstart and a long distance on the 10-mila map, so I have still been able to get proper forest training. The biggest challenge have been the strength training as I use the barbell a lot and this type of strength training is my favourite as it’s the most fun to do, but also the one that gives me the best result. Instead I have been working on basic core stability and been using the gym machines as the leg press et c to compensate from what I can’t to with the barbell. Yesterday I got rid of the plaster (after 3,5 weeks), and the bone looks good, but is not completely healed. I must wear a hand orthosis for 3 more weeks (and therefore not lifting a barbell during this period) and then continue to be a bit careful the next 3 weeks, so this will for sure take some time… A silly, stupid injury which in the big perspective not will have a large effect, but restricts me in some small manners which sometimes is demanding.

The last week I have also had some small achilles problems (due to running at the snowy and icy ground), but I hope that this will disappear quickly as I’ve stopped running some days ago. On Sunday I am leaving for the next training camp, the MOC camp and championsship in Berga and Tarragona outside Barcelona. I cross my fingers (the healthy ones) that I will be able to run all quality sessions to continue working on my sprint skills.

Ps: And you must ask me IRL about the true story about how I actually broke my hand…

 

 

Photos 3-4: Göran Winblad