Skiers are born in summer –

Karoline Simpson-Larsen. (Photo: NordicFocus)

Elite skiers typically complete 80 to over 100 hours of training per month from June to September to build a strong base of endurance for the ski season and every kilometer counts.

However, recording long hours for weeks on end makes it even more crucial to pay close attention to the balance between easy distance and intensity, as well as variety to keep things fresh and avoid injury and overtraining.

So what exactly does it look like?Cross-country skier Madshus Karoline Simpson-Larsen, who has just been named to the Norwegian national team for the 2022/23 season, explains how she sees her summer training plan and the distribution between distance training, strength training and other activities.

“I like summer and arid lands. That’s when winter kicks in and I can really put in the long hours,” says Simpson-Larsen.

For her, that usually means around 90 hours a month in July, August and September. As a result, the majority of those hours are easy distance, long training sessions that provide the endurance base for the racing season. “I do a LOT of easy distance in the summer, and I try to mix up the workouts by doing different types of activities, so I vary between roller skiing both skate and classic, running and even sometimes activities totally different to keep things fresh,” she says.

And while volume and easy distance are the theme of the summer, Simpson-Larsen also includes intensity sessions on a regular basis. But just like the workouts themselves, the intervals are longer in the summer.

“This time of year I tend to do longer intervals but not as hard. I usually stay at or below the threshold in the summer and make sure I don’t completely bury myself with the workouts. I know other skiers like to go harder than me even in the summer, but I like to save the shorter, harder intervals for closer to the season,” says Simpson-Larsen.

Finally, we asked the promising 25-year-old to share her favorite dry land workout.

Of all these fun options, wWhat’s your favorite dry land workout?“I love running in the mountains. So an easy 3 hour distance above the tree line on a sunny summer day is probably my absolute favorite workout.

Why do you like it?“These long races give me energy. I love being outside in nature and enjoying the scenery, while training well. And I like the convenience of running. Just put on your running shoes and go.

What are the specific training effects?“Long, easy distance sessions are great for building that general endurance base you need for the race season. The key is to take it easy. So if I come into really steep sections or particularly gnarly I switch to hiking to reduce heart rate and exertion These types of workouts teach your body to be able to go long but over time I also feel like they even help increase your overall capacity and your ability to go harder on intervals and in races.

How often do you do it?“In the summer, I usually do 3-hour workouts at least twice a week.”

Is there a waysvary training?“Yes, tons of options. Obviously you can ride a different route, choose different types of surfaces, like soft trails, mountain trails, gravel or dirt roads. Or you can choose flatter terrain or steeper, hilly terrain or summit offers.Or you can switch up running with roller skiing.

Now go get those hills and get ready to navigate even further, faster and with greater ease when the snow flies!

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