Volume 16 Issue 43: Feb 18, 2015
SkiPost: Birkie Main Street Night
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Birkie Wax Rec

Yes Start will be at the Birkie Expo


Start Green

MF10 & SFR 75 = Super Glide

Start Oslo Green or Syn & Terva Green = Super Kick







Protect your Eyes

Get Your Bliz at Birkie EXPO







Birkie Fever Bash Set For Feb. 19



Join Ben Popp, executive director of the American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation, and Birkie Founder John Kotar for the Birkie Fever Bash on Feb. 19 at the Hayward Steakhouse & Lodge.  This fundraising party begins at 6 p.m. Thursday of Birkie Week.


 Popp will briefly discuss the ABSF's plan for to buy and build a permanent start area at Telemark as well as new features in this year's race like the bridge over Highway 63 on the Main Street finish in Hayward, Wis.  Kotar will share stories of the Birkie's early years in the 70s.


The ABSF hopes to raise $650,000 by the start of the race on Feb. 21, its goal for Phase 1 of its first ever capital fundraising campaign.  These funds will secure land at Telemark for a start area, connecting and stadium trails as well as a trailhead. Funds will also help pay for the International Bridge.


Tickets are $50, which includes food, beer and wine, and seats are limited to 350. See for more information and registration.


Birkie Warm-Up


What is a typical warm up routine for a 50k+ race?  I am doing my first Birkie and want to have enough energy to finish strong, but also be warmed up enough to not start slow.  


Great question.

One key to a successful Birkie is not to bonk. A Key to not bonking is to get about 20 minutes of aerobic activity in before you go anaerobic. At the Birkie this is always tough because the logistics, access to the trail, and the masses. Best to put on your running shoes and run after you get to the start and sometime in the 45 minutes before the start. Do a few short leg speeds in the 20 minute slow jog. Just get your body going. If you have not warmed up before the race, then make sure you do not sprint when the cannon goes off and go anaerobic in the first km.  If you go balls to the wall from the gun and have not warned up then your body will try to burn easy sugars and not fats and you will be more likely to bonk later in race. To avoid the bonk, warm up, or start at race pace but do not at a sprint from the gun and then keep this pace going. Just do not go anaerobic before your body is ready. Do not worry as you will pass the sprinters after OO.


Andy at SkiPost

Tad Elliott

50k Smash Mode



Get some Purell because I hear a fever is spreading. I have a touch of it all the way out in Colorado.  It's called Birkie fever.  Just like any fever, Birkie fever can negatively affect a race. Overexcitement.  Too much stimulation at the expo.  Repeatedly clicking "refresh" on  Worrying about how cool I look in my new gear. These are all feelings I have experienced the last few days before the big race.  So how do I use the excitement and nerves to my advantage to race the fastest on Saturday?  I have a few secrets up my suit...


First, I make sure I am organized.  Being organized means being prepared and having a plan.  I have everything I need for any circumstance should it come up. My nutrition and feeds are ready. I know what I am doing Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday before the race.  My skis are dialed in and ready to go. This is all done before I hit the tarmac on my way to Wisconsin. That way, from there on out, I am able to go into zombie mode and just follow my yellow brick road. I only worry about things I can control.


The second secret is rest. I know the hay is in the barn and that all I need to do for training in Hayward is to try to keep feeling good. The year I got second to the Italians, I took Thursday and Friday off from skiing. Thursday, I stayed in bed all day.  Friday, I only went on a 45 min walk.  Also, the year I got second and the year I won, I did not warm up for the race.  Zero skiing before the start. I stayed warm in the car and was hydrating and eating.  I had two Honey Stinger waffles, one an hour and half before the start, the other 45 minutes before go.  At 30 minutes before the race, I went for a short walk and stretch. 10 minutes before, I stripped down and changed into race clothes. Then I went to the start pen, clicked my bindings down, and got ready to go. Now that I am older, I probably can't pull off this relaxation stint I had going. This year I will likely jog and stretch for a warm up, but I hope not to ski.


My third secret is wax techs. This year, I have Caldwell sport preparing some of my skis and shipping them to Hayward. I also have my twin brother, Evan, and Bill Pierce coming to test my skis.  My brother is one of the best wax and ski techs I know. He tests thousands of skis a season and is better at his job than I could ever hope to be. I do not interfere with what he does. He doesn't tell me how to get ready to race and I don't tell him how to wax. I ask him to test my skis and make the final call.  It's important to trust wax techs.  The year I won, Zach Caldwell made the call on a pair of skis that I was nervous about. They felt squirrely compared to my other skis and I asked if I could still win on a different pair. He said, "Probably, but you will win on this pair, if you choose them."  I went with Zach's pick.  Moral of the story, wax techs are smarter than I am.  So I let them do their job. For those of you who test our own wax, my first recommendation is get yourself a twin.  If that's not possible, prepare your skis and test the morning before.  That can be a lot of work and stress, but if you love that part of racing, go for it!


Next secret:  I hydrate.  I always bring a drink belt. This is a huge must. I bring the kind where I can swap out water bottles. If my bottle freezes in the race, I can just toss it and get a new one 4k later. I try to have calories in your bottle, too.  I exclusively use Tailwind drink mix. Tailwind is all natural and made up of healthy calories, so I can avoid bonking - a huge advantage.  It also has enough salt and calories so that all I need is the drink mix.  I don't need to eat during the race.


My last secret is I try to remind myself that if I want to race smash mode, I have to live smash mode.  I stay loose and relaxed. I try not to get too worked up.  I rent fast cars.  Most importantly, I try to treat the people around me well, especially the volunteers who are out there freezing all day.  They do it for the love of the sport, just like the rest of us.  I try to be kind and courteous, and remember that if I have a race I'm not stoked on, chances are, nobody is going to remember in two beer's time.  I don't want to give anyone another reason to remember.


This event is awesome, rad, cool, and fun.  Be sure to have some.








Holly Says

What to do or not to do in Birkie Week


Dear Birkie Bound Skiers, 


I'm settled here in Hayward and it's Birkie-Bliss!  The snow is absolutely perfect, the coverage is ample, and despite some cold temperatures, the sun has been shining. The stage is set for the perfect Birkie week! 


The American Birkebeiner is race #6 of the FIS Marathon Cup series.  This season I'm focusing on ski marathons and I'm chasing the overall title which will be awarded after the nine race series.  The Birkie is an important opportunity for me to gain valuable points plus  it's the only race in the series that will take place on North American soil. Consequently, I'm putting a lot of thought, time and preparation into my race. Here are a couple tips for you to consider: 


1) Don't do a marathon before the marathon. If you've been training and your goal is to perform on race day, don't get overly excited, hyped up and ambitious about skiing long distances the days leading up to the race. Keep workouts, course inspection and ski testing succinct. Make sure to emphasize daily rest amongst all of the fun festivities and socializing! 


2) Warm up hard OR ease into the race. If you plan to race hard off the start line when the gun goes off don't do so without doing some intervals during your warm up. My standard marathon warm up is easy distance pace for 20 minutes followed by two intervals, one at L3, one at L4 (2-5 minutes each). Then I always like to do a couple quick sprints as close to the start of the race as I can. At the Birkie the easiest warm up for logistic purposes may be running (because there is no transportation for warm up skis.) I love using my Salomon spikecross shoes whenever I try to run fast on a slippery surface! 


3) Make a timetable. Just like you would plan a busy day at work with time slots and deadlines, write out a race morning, race plan. Include transportation time, time for waiting in long bathroom lines, what time to start your warm up, and what time you want to get to your start wave. There is nothing worse than being short on time before a marathon. It's happened to me and by nature of being rushed I've made some big mistakes. Make sure you have enough time to make it your perfect race but simultaneously, make sure you don't warm up too early just because you're nervous! 


4) Feed early, feed often. Drop the paleo diet, sugar is your friend on race day! Will you carry your own drink bottle or use race feed stations? What happens if your bottle freezes? I cannot stress the importance of race nutrition during a ski marathon. Just last week I ran out of sugar at the Transjursienne in France and was flirting with a horrible bonk the last 20k of the race. Unless you have a fool-proof race plan and support team, take back up sugar!  My Salomon exo suit has special pockets to store GU and shot blocks. Keep gels close to your body so they don't freeze. Before race day, practice eating and drinking with your system and work the bugs out. (Can you open a Gu with lobster mits?)


5) Last but not least, when your legs are screaming at your while climbing up Bitch Hill, smile. Yes, that's right, smile. hysiologists and psychologists have worked together to show that smiling can enhance performance. Give it a try! 


Have a WONDERFUL Birkie week and see you on the trails! 


Holly Brooks 


Salomon Complete


-Holly Brooks 

Twitter: @brooksha1

Facebook: Holly Brooks - Dare to Dream 

Holly Brooks

Seeing the World and is people one ski Marathon at a Time


FIS Marathon Cup Leader


Birkie Champion


Is back at the Birkie.


Visit her at the:

VIP Dinner:

Elite Sprints

USST reunion

Salomon Booth



Uphill Skating Drills


Skate Skiing Uphill: 2 Quick Drills - Quick Hops & Long Glides
Skate Skiing Uphill: 2 Quick Drills - Quick Hops & Long Glides



Enjoy and...


Ski Fast!


David Lawrence 




Muno-IGY, so simple and natural.....but proving to be so effective.


 This past week, Brian and Caitlin Gregg, two amazing world class Nordic Skier's , won again at a high altitude race in Aspen Colorado, making this their 4th podium visit this season each. They give big kudos for Vector450 to keep them healthy, recovered, and ready to race. Not only are they using it, but so are their friends and family who don't even ski. We are seeing the same results in the world of triathlon which is our year-round focus down here in Texas.  Triathlon does not require snow to train!




Brian and Caitlin Gregg after both winning the Owl Creek Chase, Aspen CO



When I was originally presented Vector450 with IgY I was incredibly skeptical. As a "science nerd" I was always taught to look at every supplement claim with a critical eye. I brushed off IgY and didn't think about it again for about a year. For over a year, my fellow triathletes at Trident Sports in Fort Worth Texas have not stopped talking about it. Trident Sports owner and coach, Tim Tarpley, (also a skeptic), has made it a key part of his training program.


Turns out....maybe these "IgY people" were actually on to something! One of the exciting things about nutrition, sports medicine and science is that research is always discovering new things! After reading the research about IgY and its effects on gut health I was quickly impressed. My original skepticism was completely unnecessary, and to be quite honest, I am slightly embarrassed I didn't even give it a shot earlier.


In my nutrition practice, I always start with the gut, no matter what a client's goals may be. I truly believe that a balanced life and overall health starts in the digestive system. . Stressors from daily life, training, aging and the environment create a gut-imbalance that starts an "Inflammation Cascade" in the body. 75% of life's immune challenges begin here. That is where IgY comes in. IgY interrupts this chain of events, brings the gut back into balance (homeostasis) and supports the innate immune system in its daily work of maintaining good health. Taken orally, Muno-IgY helps the body to flush out foreign invaders, therefore keeping the body healthy and naturally reducing inflammation. What's impressive to me is the reductions in specific inflammatory markers (ex: pro-inflammatory cytokine). The positive side effect of balancing your system is greater energy reserves, faster recovery and less chance of catching a bug.


At Trident, we have a bulletin board with all the athletes who have done the "Vector450 Challenge", where they do back to back lactate threshold tests without Vector450, and then after a week or so of trying 2-3 capsules per day, repeat the test. Taking Vector helps the recovery so effectively that they can achieve the same threshold back to back. This translates to better training and performance gains.


I am quickly coming to promote this product to not only my athletes, but all my clients, using Muno-IGY as the starting point in helping them with their nutrition and immune challenges.


Heather is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian in the Fort Worth area who specializes in sports nutrition, immunology and eating disorders. She truly believes that proper nutrition holds the key to a happy and healthy lifestyle, which can be achieved without deprivation, fad dieting or restriction. (


More at




Get Lungplus to preheat your breath and save your lungs. 

Lungplus at Birkie



Come visit the Lungplus Booth at the Birkie Expo this weekend!  Lungplus units will be $5 off and when you purchase a unit at the expo, you will receive a sample of Warmskin and you will be entered in a drawing for a winter survival basket filled with: a tub of Warmskin, a 2 night stay at Urban Silent Sports Retreat in Duluth, a box of  hand warmers, ice trekkers, and more!


World Championships

Live streaming -thanks L.L. Bean

Nordic Worlds Live Stream Schedule Announced 


A full schedule of medal events will be streamed live to the USA from the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships starting in Falun Feb. 18-March 1, opening with classic sprints for men and women on Thursday. The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association, in partnership with presenting sponsor L.L.Bean, has announced the full schedule of events to be live streamed over the next 11 days of competition.


The Feb. 18-Mar. 1 World Championships will mark the first time U.S. fans have had comprehensive free access to an English language broadcast of World Championships. Each event will stream live on, with parallel transmission on Video highlights will also be available on the USSA Network on YouTube. Fans in the USA and Canada can also follow the action live on the Falun2015 Live Arena mobile app for iOS devices developed by Falun 2015 digital experience partner Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC).


The live streaming is the result of a unique partnership developed by the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association to obtain domestic broadcast rights and provide the first-ever live coverage to nordic fans across America. A full "How to Watch" guide plus schedule is available at






Thursday, Feb. 19

9:15 a.m. - Men's and women's classic sprint


Friday, Feb. 20

4:00 a.m. - Nordic combined HS100 jump

10:00 a.m. - Nordic combined 10k cross country

11:00 a.m. - Women's HS100 jump


Saturday, Feb. 21

7:00 a.m. - Women's 15k skiathlon

8:30 a.m. - Men's 30k skiathlon

10:30 a.m. - Men's HS100 jump


Sunday, Feb. 22

4:00 a.m. - Nordic combined HS100 team jump

8:30 a.m. - Men's and women's freestyle team sprint

10:00 a.m. - Nordic combined 4x5k relay


Tuesday, Feb. 24

7:30 a.m. - Women's 10k freestyle


Wednesday, Feb. 25

7:30 a.m. - Men's 15k freestyle

11:00 a.m. - Men's HS134 jump


Thursday, Feb. 26

4:00 a.m. - Nordic combined HS134 jump

7:30 a.m. - Women's 4x5k relay

9:15 a.m. - Nordic combined 10k


Friday, Feb. 27

7:30 a.m. - Men's 4x10k relay


Saturday, Feb. 28

4:00 a.m. - Nordic combined HS134 team jump

7:00 a.m. - Men's 30k classic

10:00 a.m. - Nordic combed 3x7.5k team relay

11:00 a.m. - Men's HS134 jump


Sunday, March 1

7:30 a.m. - Men's 50k classic 



World Cup Action


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

Select Events & Destinations

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.


Touring Center For Sale




Osceola Tug Hill XC Ski Center 

For Sale

Camden NY


Incorporated in December of 1980 and still growing 10-12% a year after almost 35 years.  40k of trails for skate and classic on 225 acres of land.  In addition to the ski center we have an adjacent camp that we rent to skiers.  Complete financials available. Asking price is $560,000 without the camp and $597,000 with the  camp. For more information contact


Hugh Quinn

Osceola Tug Hill XC

315 599 7377

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

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Support Tomorrow's Nordic Stars Today

Bliz Active Logo

This Bliz
This Bliz

25 Medals for Bliz Athletes 

Start Wax Recs

Swenor Rollerskis


Poles Sizing

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

Salomon Nordic
on the Worldloppet

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.

Jon Engen

CXC Academy
Vector 450


Get Lungplus to preheat your breath and save your lungs. 



Owl Creek



West Yellowstone



Rossignol Catalog

Bliz RX
FIS Cross Country Video Links

Davos Dec 
IBU Biathlon Video Links

Start Race Service



For more Start America  




BLIZ America Dealers 



For more BLIZ USA info 





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