Improving My Odds

By: CXC Team Member, Cory Ellertson

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This fall, CXC asked each of its athletes to come up with a goal for the upcoming racing season. Apparently I take goal setting very seriously because it has taken me months to decide on an answer! After reflecting on my previous racing season and analyzing what went right and what went wrong at every race, it was easy. I want to win.

Winning to me means doing EVERYTHING within my power to have a good race. I realized there were races last year where I didn’t do everything in my power to make that happen. Looking back, there are a couple races specifically that are devastating for me to think about. Whether it was getting enough rest or sleep, better wax and ski testing, eating right, drinking right, etc. There were some races where I didn’t do everything I could to succeed and after putting in so many hours training, it’s baffling and regrettable. Last season, I pretty much doubled the amount of racing I did, but didn’t account for the demands on the body. I don’t think I took good enough care of myself and demanded too much. This caused bad and tired races. By learning from these mistakes and making the proper adjustments, I think i can improve my odds and be competitive at every race I enter!

In addition to improving my race preparation, I need to work on not losing the race mentally before it starts. I think everyone can relate to this one. You’re feeling good, ready to race, did everything right to have a great day and then you look around the start line and you see someone you know is fast or even someone you don’t know, but man do they look fast. And BOOM, you immediately start doubting yourself and start thinking about it being ok if you get 2nd or 3rd or whatever. If it’s your goal to win, you cannot be ok with second before you even start racing! Looking back on my hockey career, my best games came when I visualized positive outcomes before the game as well as the night before. I would see myself scoring the go ahead goal or setting up the overtime winner. This was a self hypnosis technique that my dad learned in his time with Team Birkie and passed on to me. For some reason, it never occurred to me to use it for ski racing.

By making these adjustments and another year of hard training, I hope to have some great results! Now we just need mother nature to cooperate so we can all put our training to the test. There are a lot of fast skiers who have trained hard this summer and fall and I’m excited for some battles.

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