Volume 16 Issue 37: Jan 8th, 2015
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Do you have a Nordic training, technique, equipment, travel, or event question? Just email us at 

Powder vs Block



Simply, what is better, pure fluoro powders or blocks?.  Supposedly the powder is faster, but less durable.  I'm told the blocks last 2-3x longer than the powder vials.  This question pertains mostly to skating in Midwest marathons.





If you are doing Marathons you most often will want to burn in a 100% Fluor Powder for best speeed throughout the entire marathon. Powder is more durable because you can apply more and burn it on more. Blocks provide simple and fast application and can seem less costly because you can stretch them out. Blocks can be very good for shorter races or if you really cake them on and then burn them in for longer races.

I would suggest Start's SFR 75 cold powder for cold marathons (it has been on winning skis at the Birke for 3 years in a row now) and Start SF30 as a universal Fluor for warmer marathons. The statement above are a general statement and there are specific circumstances where blocks can beat powders and corking can beat burning etc...


Andy at SkiPost/Start

Light Weight


Hi, my son is a J2 top contender and nationals hopeful who weighs 88 lbs. He is an incredibly self motivated and positive racer with a strong desire to attend nationals this year.  His biggest strength is his amazing hill climbing where he often emerges from the lead pack in the front. His biggest challenge is getting passed, one-by-one on the downhill by larger and heavier racers.  Do any of the experts (possibly one with a similar weight challenge) have any suggestions or strategies for this otherwise gifted youth ski racer.




Hello. First realize that one reason he can climb so speedily is that he has a great strength to weight ratio. The larger kids say, "I beat so and so across the flats on the downhill but he kills me on the hills what can I do? I tell them the same thing I will tell your kid, train your weakness and race your strength.

Your son likely loves the climbs and hammers on the climbs in training. Have him focus is training on the downhills and flats. Do speed work on gradual turning downhill or flat section. Find ways to maintain his speed through these sections. Work on the uncomfortable sections in training. Learn how to glide. Many small kids are so quick and love a fast turnover and they are light so they do not sink in some snow conditions so they forget to work on glide. Large kids sink in snow that light kids float over so large kids often have a better glide because they have had to work on it. So work on your ski feel and glide. Instead of skating like mad on a slight downhill work on how long you can glide with each stroke. Work on glide efficiency. Test yourself to see just how far you can glide with each stroke. 


Now on race day, race to your strength by hammering the climbs, but do so with a brain.  Do not just pass other racers on the climbs and let them remain just behind you over the top of the climb. If you are going to pass someone do so with conviction and gap them. Either pass them at the bottom of the climb so you can gap them by the top. Or if you catch someone near the top save your energy and draft behind the largest or fastest downhiller on the downhill. You are small, so work on a tiny tuck and work on your glide. Relax on the downhill only apply a skate stroke when you really need to and then do so with 100% effort. Better to do 5 100% strokes than 10 70% strokes. Look for speed by maximizing your glide and skiing efficiency.  Glide Glide Glide. This goes for both classic in skate. Train your weakness race your strength.


Andy at SkiPost  

Intervals vs Specific Strength 


Would alternating between double poling only for 3-5 minutes and skate skiing only for 3-5 minutes for 1.5 hours be considered interval training.  I am 60 years old.



It would be better classified as specific strength as you are working on one specific muscle group., which is good but likely intervals. Intervals have to do with extending your effort level with increased pulse pushing just past your comfort threshold. To race faster you need good specific strength but also a higher aerobic threshold. But best to do intervals with good technique and all of your body.


Andy at SkiPost

Applying Start Green

over the slightly softer Start Blue


How do you apply Start Green Glider?

My preferred method is to hot crayon on Start Green by touching it to the iron first and quickly applying it to the base while the wax is still molten. I also suggest you apply the just slightly softer Start Blue under your 1st layer of Green so you can get a better bond and also decrease the chance of over heating the base. You should then let the wax cool completely prior to scraping and brushing it off.


Evan Pengelly

Start Product Manager

Applying Fluor


I received a SFR 92 Block for Christmas, it is my 1st 100% Fluor Wax.
How do I apply it?

You can use a hot iron application or a cold cork application.
Hot application is better for longer races and for wetter conditions.
Cold method for short races or extreme cold.

START - Application of block glider
START - Application of block glider

or you can use the Cold method

START - Application of FHF11 block glider cold application
START - Application of FHF11 block glider cold application

Breath Easier

The polar vortex is back!!  Looking for a way to stay warmer and breathe easier during the temperature plunge?  Try a Lungplus !  Lungplus is a mouthworn humidifier that will warm your lungs and body without fogging up your glasses!

Cleaning Brushes


I have metal, nylon and animal hair brushes. What should I be doing to clean these brushes and how frequently should they be cleaned.


Thanks, S


You can clean your brushes as often as possible using a high powered shop vac.

Andy at SkiPost

World Cup Action
Tour De Ski
TdS - Ladies Day 1
TdS - Ladies Day 1
TdS - Men Day 1
TdS - Men Day 1

Stage 2 Men
Stage 2 Men
Stage 2 Women
Stage 2 Women

TDS Stage 3
TDS Stage 3

TDS Stage 4 Men
TDS Stage 4 Men

TDS Stage 4 Ladies
TDS Stage 4 Ladies

Where can we watch the World Cup action from US computers?
Cross Country events streamed live at 

IBU World Cup Biathlon  

SkiPost will host archive links to taped events. See Top Right Column


Andy at SkiPost

Check out the all new Start Waxing Guide.



Start Race Day Wax Recs here

Select Events & Destinations


 Cross Country Ski Extravaganza 

 January 11, 2015.

The Aspen Cross Country Center is located on 70 km of free trails of the Aspen Snowmass Nordic Trail System at the Aspen Golf Course off Hwy 82. The Center is a convenient spot to demo gear, take a lesson or head out on a guided tour. In addition to the retail shop and ski school, we offer ski tuning and repair services, a public waxing room and locker rooms.  The Aspen Cross Country Center is owned and operated by the Ute Mountaineer. Please call 925-2145 for more information.


Jan 23-25, 2015

  40th Boulder Mountain Tour

and Sun Valley Nordic Festival


 Sun Valley, Idaho has been lucky this year with its snowpack, and the past week of perfect skiing-think bluebird skies, fast snow, and amazing views-has us pretty excited for the 40 th Annual Boulder Mountain Tour! It's not called The most beautiful Nordic race you'll ever ski for nothing. Those 34KM of prime racing shine as the jewel of the larger Sun Valley Nordic Festival, a ten-day celebration of everything free heel in NordicTown USA. 


"People often come for the BMT one year, see what they're missing during the rest of the week, and extend their trip the next year to be part of the festival," says Julia Bowman, SVNF Director. 


The Sun Valley Nordic Festival runs January 30 th through February 8th and has something for everyone-from Local Kicker ski tours to a biathlon race for able-bodied and disabled athletes to the NordicTown USA Sprints that are held right next to the Post Office.

For more information, visit 

  Owl Creek Chase

Feb 15th


Sunday, March 1st 2015 | 

Mt. Van Hoevenberg at The Olympic Sports Complex

The Lake Placid Loppet is one of the best events of its kind in the country. Over the past 30 years, thousands of skiers have enjoyed skiing and racing on the challenging Mt. Van Hoevenberg trails at the Olympic Sports Complex. The Lake Placid Loppet is conducted by the NYS Olympic Regional Development Authority on the Olympic Sports Complex Cross Country Ski Trails.  The Loppet and Kort -Loppet run on a slightly modified version of the 50km course constructed for the 1980 Winter Olympics making it one of the most challenging citizen races in the world.  Skiers should consider carefully whether to enter the 25k or 50km event. However, many recreational skiers do participate at a less strenuous touring pace.


Birkie Tour




Top 5 exciting reasons you should sign up for the Birkie Tour and Seeley Hills Classic Combo weekend!

  1.    The next price increase is coming so register by Dec 31st to pay only $50 for the Tour or $90 for the whole weekend. Registration is already ahead of last year so come join the fun!
  2. Birkie Ambassadors, some of our local celebs, will be leading Tour groups in both the 23k and 46k skate and classic races, specific leaders and times will be posted the week of the event along with how to join them on the trail. Keep an eye out for yellow "Ambassador" bibs as there will be many skiing along throughout the Tour to answer questions and give advice as well.
  3. Marshmallow roasting hosted by the Hayward area youth programs at the Bodecker food station (yes, you read that right, marshmallows on the trail!)
  4. The Cabin Stop will be providing chili, beer, and pop at the Start/Finish area to re-fuel and socialize after your ski.
  5.  Keep your ears open for upcoming info for on snow demos that weekend as well!

The Birkie Tour is a fun day for skiers of any ability to enjoy a supported ski on the world class Birkie Trail. The food and all the extras make it a fun community event to meet other skiers locally and from around the region. To register and for up-to-date information visit


We look forward to seeing you having fun on the trails!



Nordic Job Openings

Nordic Job Opening? email to post

About SkiPost


Cross-Country skiing's community lodge. Where knowledge and stories are shared. The goal of SkiPost is to make the sport of Cross-Country skiing easier and more enjoyable for all who choose to participate. If you have questions on Cross-Country Skiing email us and visit


Enjoy Winter,

Andrew Gerlach
Director/Editor- SkiPost
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In This Issue
Ask Us
Powder vs Block
Specific Strength
Applying Start Green
Applying Fluor
Breath Easier
Cleaning Brushes
WC Videos
Wax Manual
Start Race Service Centers
FIS Cross Country Video Links
Davos Dec 
IBU Biathlon Video Links

nnf word
Support Tomorrow's Nordic Stars Today

Bliz Active Logo

This Bliz
This Bliz

25 Medals for Bliz Athletes 

Start Wax Recs


Poles Sizing

New World Wax Table 
 "The best table in the entire world!"

Salomon Nordic
on the Worldloppet


Craft Custom 

Rossignol Web


find the time
The one gift you receive at birth is time.  You'll never have more  than you have today.  Find the Time.

Nordic Ski Dolomites, Italy

Feb. 14-23, 2015

Fabulous Scenery!

1000 Km of groomed trails to explore.

Sign-up before Oct. 30th for best deal!


Jon Engen

CXC Academy
Vector 450


Get Lungplus to preheat your breath and save your lungs. 



Owl Creek



West Yellowstone



Rossignol Catalog

Bliz RX

Start Race Service



For more Start America  




BLIZ America Dealers 



For more BLIZ USA info 





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