Wednesday, May 27, 2015

3 weeks in Sierra Nevada

Last winter I followed a bit different training program than the previous years. Since I'm not in the Norwegian National Teams training group I have had the opportunity to plan my training exactly as I want and believe in. I have not been on so many training camps, but when I have been away I have tried to stay at the same place for a longer time. I have not been running too much orienteering, but had main focus in becoming a faster runner. A main goal has been to have continuity in my training, without to many disturbing elements.

In January I spent 3 weeks in Swiss mountains and in February 10 days in Alicante with my club IFK Lidingö. In connection with the Easter I had my second high altitude training camp, and from the end of March to the middle of April I spent almost 3 weeks in Sierra Nevada in Spain.

Originally I was thinking about going to Flagstaff in USA or Dullstroom or Eldoret/Iten in Africa, but ended up with Sierra Nevada since it was a much shorter travel, and still seemed to be a place for good training conditions. In short terms I can say that it was fantastic environments for training, and that the first two weeks was really good, while the last week was partly destroyed by stomach problems and fever.

I stayed in Sierra Nevada ski resort 2200 masl the whole period. The day I arrived it was snowing, but the following days the temperature increased to be around 15 degrees in daytime. The first week I did only easy training, and the last two weeks I had planed to have a high intensive training every third day.

For most of my training I traveled down to altitude between 1200 and 1800 masl. There it was mostly great weather, and possible to run in short pants and without shirt. I did several long easy runs in the mountains, where I was out for 3 – 4 hours.

The website Trek Sierra Nevada was useful for finding nice places to run, and I was running all of the 10 closest hikes in the area between Sierra Nevada and Granada. Sometimes I made a combination of several hikes, or made an extra loop.

The first two weeks my training went really well and here are the highlights I have mentioned on Twitter @Kvaal_Osterbo:

The first week I stayed alone. That was fine because I had a lot of work to do, and was mainly sitting in front of my computer when I was not out training. The two last weeks I got company from a Norwegian friend and my family.

The third week was unfortunately partly ruined because I got some serious stomach problems. In that period I traveled down to Nerja at the coast, to recover faster than in high altitude. I had to stay in bed (or at the bathroom) for some days, with fever in the beginning.

Pictures from Sierra Nevada

It took some weeks before I felt recovered from the stomach problems, and I think the sickness also influenced in my results during the Norwegian World Cup selection races in the end of April, where I finished 3rd in Sprint and 16th in Long.

But the last weeks my shape has felt better and better, and I have got some pretty good results, even if my orienteering have not always been the best. In 10mila I ran in the IFK Lidingö team finising in 4th place, and in a Swedish League WRE Sprint in Dalarna I finished with the 2nd best time, but was disqualified because I punched a wrong control. Last week I was 3rd in Stockholm City Cup2nd in Centrum Team Sprint together with Niklas Serrander and did a pretty good 5 km street race finishing 2nd in the time 15.33 (in a too hilly course to set a top time).

Now I am looking forward the Norwegian Sprint Champs in Tønsberg the coming weekend, and hopefully World Cup in Norway and Sweden next week.

PS: The last year my main focus has been on training, work and social life, and I have not prioritized updating this blog so frequently. For weekly updates you can follow me on Twitter @Kvaal_Osterbo and Instagram @okvaal.

Monday, May 18, 2015

4th in 10mila with IFK Lidingö

My club IFK Lidingö had great result in all the 5 major relays last season, finishing 2nd in 10mila, Jukola and Swedish Champs, and winning 25manna and Smålandskavlen. The winter training have gone well for the whole team, and we had quite big expectations for 10mila this year.

The Lidingö boys did a great job during the night, and sent me out on the 7th leg in the leading group together with 4 other teams.

I followed my plan and ran secure night orienteering in the beginning of the leg. Had company with Frol and SNO, but from the forking in the east part of the course I was alone (in 3rd position).

It started to be lighter when I headed back, and I tried to increase the speed. But on the long leg to the 15th control I lost more than 1 minute going too much to the right in the middle part of the leg. Tried to be accurate with the direction on the shorter legs in the green in the end, but missed the 18th control with almost 3 minutes. I was then passed by IFK Göteborg, Kalevan Rasti and Halden, and changed over as 6th team.

Filip and Mårten did great races on the following legs and brought us up in the lead before the last leg, but Fredrik didn't have a good day technical (even if it seemed like he had the highest running speed), and we finished in 4th position. It felt bittersweet since we were so close to the victory, even if most of the team did really well. IFK Göteborg won in front of Halden and Kalevan Rasti after a strong sprint finish by Eskil Kinneberg.

Lidingö's women's teams did also great, and finished 6th, 21th and 39th. We have already started to look forward to Jukola, that will be held in Finland in just one month.

ResultsGPS tracking and video broadcast from 10mila.

IFK Lidingö's homepage has a report from each leg for both the women's and men's teams.