Better late than never – Review of 2017

27 01 2018

I wrote this months ago, but forgot to publish it so here we go – a look back at my best orienteering year so far!

First some training data:

Total amount of training: 548 hours – This is 10 hours less than 2016. However, my illness during August destroyed one month of training, so the training load was actually higher than 2016 the first 9 months.

  • Running 69 %  (47 % of the running was orienteering)
  • Alternative training 21 % (crosstrainer 50 %, wetvest 33 %, biking 16 % and roller ski 1 %)
  • Strength training 11 %
  • Rest days: 62 (33 days of illness. 2016 I had 4 days of illness)

Best results:

  • WORLD CHAMPION sprint relay (ran the first leg, changed as nr 5, + 7 seconds)
  • BRONZE World Games sprint
  • 3rd World Cup sprint Finland
  • 3rd World Cup middle Finland
  • 2nd at 10-mila with Göteborg-Majorna OK (ran the 3rd leg)
  • 1st at the 1st leg at World Games sprint relay
  • 27:56 at the grus8an (7,8km) track in Skatås (PB with 23 seconds from 2016)

Summary: During 2016 I had many successful relay performances, but 2017 I finally succeeded individually. 3 times 3rd at international competitions is way better than ever before! (2013 I was 3rd at a Nordic Tour Sprint in Oslo). On top of this I got the chance to run the first leg in our sprint relay team at the World Championships which ended up with a victory and a GOLD MEDAL. So cool! Unfortunately I did not succeed individually at the World Championships, and my autumn season got destroyed by 4 weeks of illness. Although, I look back at a great year, where I also got to succeed at home ground 10-mila with my team in Göteborg-Majorna, where we ended at 2nd position.

November 16’

After the 2016 season I was very tired and took a long rest. In the beginning of November my plan was to hit the road to 2017, but once I was suppose to start I got sick for one week. No worries, but I was not able to go to the national team camp in Örebro, where I was supposed to lead the OL-gala once again together with Maria. I got healthy, and started with the basic training including “nattcup” and 8 times 1k around the grus8a. Just great.

December 16’

Quite high amount of hours, and during this period a running technique project was started for the national team runners in Gothenburg. Each Thursday we gathered in Friidrottens Hus (house of track & field) for a special session with Per & Palmas, two track and field coaches. The aim was to develop our running skills and speed. So much fun and I experienced a fast improvement. December was a really good month with basics at home ground. At the New Years Eve I ran my first 10k road race in the centre of Gothenburg “Sylvesterloppet”. I flat race, with a lot of turns and some windy parts. I finished at 37:15 which was a bit better than expected. A great finish of the calendar year, but a great start of the training year!

January 17’

The training continued with basics and I had a good flow between running intervals, distance, alternative sessions and strength. However, the weather turned a bit bad with some days of icy tracks which led to a small irritation in a muscular attachment on the inside of my knee. I stopped running for a week. At the same time I visited Stockholm and the Swedish Sports Awards Gala. I was there due to a scholarship (for the ones who combine university education with elite sports career). It was so much fun to dress up and be a bit star struck! Some days after I went to Playitas at Fuertaventura, with the national team, for 11 days of training. I did mostly alternative training due to my knee, but as it became better and better I could participate at all the high intensity running sessions. This camp was so great with a lot of fun with some of my best friends and an incredibly high training load (all time high!). It is easy to do a lot of training when the weather is fine, company is awesome, buffet three times a day et c…  At the end of the camp my pain in the knee was gone! Hurray!

February 17’

Tried to get back into home ground training, but it was tough compared to Playitas. However, I got back into basics, and also I did some work in school – the last semester of my Sport Coaching studies! However, I was not at home for a long time, as I went to Alicante with my club only 1,5 week after coming home from Playitas. As it was a lot of focus on physics at Playitas, I could now focus on my technique in Alicante. The camp was fun. We were a nice mix of people from the GMOK squad and spent 4 days in the beach terrain and 2 days in the mountains (doing 3 sessions these days). Except lots of training the camp consisted of relaxing, eating oranges and scratching my arms from the caterpillars poison.  Then back home, and not surprisingly, back to basics (Easy Monday (running and/or alternative/or strength), interval Tuesday, easy Wednesday (running and/or alternative/or strength), running Thursday (running technique, indoor intervals and night orienteering), easy Friday (rest or short running), orienteering Saturday (relay training and some alternative boring shit in the afternoon) and long run Sunday).

March 16’

I still aimed for a high training load so I went on another training camp, the MOC camp in Italy. It was time to focus on sprint which I did not put so much focus on during the previous months except from the running speed training at Thursday indoor session. Some days into the camp it was time for the first hard session. A short qualification in the morning and then a knock out in the afternoon. It was long time since I pushed hard on a sprint, and I did a huge mistake in the quail, but made it to the final as nr 26 or so (of 30 qualifiers). Some kind of luck and an important reminder to put on the focus. The semi final went on well. I had a much better plan, and my legs felt good so I could finish 1st and got the free spot to the final. In the final we were 6 girls on the starting line, and 4 were Swedes. That is always nice! In the final I got into the map quickly, but Helena had a little bit higher map reading speed and took the initiative and I could follow her most of the time. She had some advantage into the last controls, but I decided not to give up and found an extra gear and cached her rather quickly into the last control and it was a very tight sprint and a photo finish, which I won! Juhu! Lots of fun and pasta as prize! The chasing start training become tougher due to my bad qualification, but these trainings were very important and I improved my head to head orienteering skills. And when the others went to MOC competitions, I drove my Fiat back to Bari and flew home to compete in the yearly running competition around grus8an. I had no idea how the legs would feel after the sprint camp with a lot of high intensity trainings, but it turned out they felt good and I finished at a new PB with 23 seconds and below 28 minutes! So unexpected! Then I was in the flow for the rest of the month. I ran my first competitions of the year in Gothenburg, a middle and a long. The long distance was a very good preparation for the long leg at 10-mila which I expected to run one month later.

April 17’

I started this month with a national team training camp in Estonia.  Eva & Kalle did a good job with the training sessions and we did 3 competition like sessions where two of those (long and relay) went on very well. I pushed hard through this camp and continued some days at home with running two smaller competitions, where the technique worked very well. However, I started to be tired after months of high training load without any break. I decreased a bit, but should have put some extra resting days. During the Easter relays I felt very tired, but was able to keep it together at Kolmårdskavlen and bring our team to victory. During the following weeks all focus was put on 10-mila. GMOK-babes were among the favourites and we felt the pressure. I was selected to run the long, unforked, 3rd leg which would suit me fine. However, I did not feel the physical shape was as good as one month before. The tiredness after the camp in Estonia was still there. Though, I managed to catch the 3 teams who went out in the clear lead and change over in the big leading group of 14 teams. I had full control on my navigation, but had wished for a better body to be able to split the group. Next time! I was then very nervous following Judith on the last leg. She did great as always and brought out team into 2nd position, just behind Tuna who won. Of course it was close to the victory, but I was very happy and proud with what we achieved that day. My last three 10-milas we have finished 2nd, 3rd and 2nd. Soon time for the 1st?

May 17’

Now it was time to shape up, individual competitions was soon about to start. In the beginning of May I did some lactate and VO2-max tests and my improvement from December was huge. Lab tests as these do not tell everything, but successful tests are always good for the self confidence! I went to our sprint and middle test races in Bollnäs even though I already was selected for the world cup in Finland. The sprint went fine, but the middle did not. It was an important reminder for the forest races in Estonia the coming weekend, which were part of our selections for the World Championships. The long distance test race went fine. A 2nd place after a tough race in the warm weather. My legs were destroyed the day after, but recovered quite well. Unfortunately I did some mistakes in the beginning of the middle test and ended 5th. I went directly from the test races by ferry to Finland and the first World Cup races of the year. It started with sprint relay and I ran for the Swedish National team with 3 girls and Gustav. I ran the first leg and changed over in the lead, but unfortunately I had missed punched at one control. However, that sprint finish was so cool, where I felt even stronger than during the MOC knock-out. But of course it was a huge disappointment to disqualify the team. The next day it was sprint qualification and final. The quail was solid and I should have won it if not the punching unit at the last control was gone when I arrived and lost 5 seconds. In the final I did a good technical job except from some small route choices and was strong in the end which meant I ended up 3rd and on the podium! Awesome! The success continued by repeating that on the middle distance one day later. That course fit me well. Short course and not so many controls. So cool to be up there once again and showing I’ve improved this year! I went out as number 3 in the chasing start and did my best, but the power was gone after many races in a few days… Great success over all but a disappointing end.

June 17’

Some days of recovery and then Sprint-SM to get one more chance to compete at sprint before world championships. The final course (signed Regborn) was very tricky and even though I had no good feeling I kept on pushing and focusing on the next route. It turned out everyone had problems so I ended up 3rd, about 15 seconds behind Tove and this was my first Swedish Championship medal in sprint. Then I was selected for all individual disciplines at WOC but chose to run sprint and middle and aiming for both relays. We went to the precamp, but during this period I pushed a bit too hard as I was very tired after the WOC test race/World Cup/Sprint-SM competitions. I finished the precamp by running Venla relay which was a personal disappointment as I did too many small mistakes due to not being focused. Two weeks left until the World Championships and tapering period. Always a mental challenge, especially when the precamp went quite bad due to a tired mind and body. Went to Estonia and as always great to get to the WOC, and my final session of 3-2-1 of high speed went well.

July 17’

Sprint qualification and final. Was surprised by how steep the hills actually were during quali, but ran through it without any big mistakes and ended 2nd in my heat. Before the final I felt relaxed, but actually I was a bit stressed focusing too much on the physical feeling. I had no clear tactics for my race. I had some parts which were very good and after 2/3 I was in the fight for the medals (among many others as it was tight). But I lost it all in the end and dropped to 12th. Very disappointed as I also thought that the spot for the relay team was gone. However, I got the chance and as last year I was able to turn a bad feeling into something good. I was scared of the hills in the sprint relay area, but had a clear plan for my race and I felt confident by running the first leg. I controlled it well in the start, but lost some time by choosing the wrong route to a forking. Though, this did not make me stressed and I stuck to my plan which was pushing hard after the arena passage. But I was disappointed when I saw the second loop looked very similar to the first loop and I thought that it was going to be hard catching the teams in front. But, I almost made it and changed over as number 5, only 7 seconds behind. I felt the race was stable, but was a bit disappointed I had been too passive. However, the others stuck to their plan as well and when all other teams did mistakes we were suddenly in a big lead and could cruise towards the gold. WORLD CHAMPION. A dream coming true. The middle distance went bad with some mistakes and therefore I was not selected to the relay. The WOC week ended with a great party with the greatest outfit. An amazing week in so many ways. After WOC I went to Gotland for one week, mostly sunbathing as I had two days with a sore throat. After that I had some pain in my knee again and my tapering plan to World Games changed into some bike  sessions.  I went to Poland with the small Swedish team and that week was one of the best ever. So much fun racing and that I was able to win the bronze medal in the sprint was an amazing feeling and a great revenge from the World Championship sprint some weeks earlier. On the middle I did one huge mistake, but otherwise it showed my speed and navigation was good enough. Something to keep on working on. The competing ended with the sprint relay where I once again could change over in the lead with 5 seconds, after a solid first leg. Then a lot of dancing which is the best way to end an incredible week and my best orienteering month so far!

August 17’

After being high on life during July it was the opposite in August. Well, the beginning was great. Starting up some basic training again and going to Eva and Raffaels wedding in Mora, which was very nice. Unfortunately, three days later, I got sick. And it did not let go until 4 weeks later. I had problems with my throat, my sinuses, my ears and my eyes. I had to cancel the world cup races in Latvia and the following training camp there… Not as high on life…

September 17’

Started to get better, but had to cancel the WOC 2019 training camp as well. Started to train with 3 weeks to go to the world cup final. Well, let’s try. 5 weeks after becoming ill I ran my first high intensity session. It felt terrible. One week later it felt a little bit better, but the summer’s shape was totally gone. I chose to not run the Swedish Long distance championships, and ran two small competitions at home, trying to find some orienteering speed. The next weekend I participated in the national Middle championships, and after a technical stable race I was 14th… The best I could perform, but not what I aimed for. I was thinking of skipping the World Cup final, but was eager to get an opportunity to finish the international season of 2017 and also eager to go to the EOC training camp the week after. My goal was to do stable technical races and not focus on the physical shape. I did not make it during the long distance, and quit the race feeling totally exhausted. The day after I performed as good as I could in the middle, and ended up 21th, + 5min. Happy to change the negative approach from the day before. As my shape was bad I ran the last leg in our 4th team (together with New Zealand) at the sprint relay the day after. After finish our coaches offered salami pizza which tasted so good. Direclty after we went up a mountain and my legs were killed. However, it was great to be back in the team, even though my shape was everything but good.

October 17’

We went directly from Grindelwald to Tessin and trained for next year’s European Championships. It was steep, but the training sessions were well planned by Thierry, as we ran quite a lot of downhill. It started to feel a bit better in my legs and I felt I was able to push a bit again. The terrain, however, is special and I need some specific training during this coming winter’s training. From Tessin, directly to 25-manna. I ran the 2nd leg and did an okay race, but with one mistake, otherwise it would have been almost perfect. It was just great to run in the flat Stockholm terrain after those hills in Switzerland. The day after I ran the middle and performed well. The rest of October was more or less about finishing my bachelor thesis in my Sport Coaching studies. At the moment I am waiting for it to pass and then I am a Sport Coach. High five! As I had quite a training break in August I felt I did not need it once again, so the last weeks of October I trained, but without any specific plan. The last days I felt eager to start up the training load and hit the road towards 2018! Let’s go!


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