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  FORUM:   Introduce Yourself to Team Forum
TOPIC:   Hello! Any cross-country skiers? 


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KAYOTIC
KAYOTIC's Photo Posts: 12,364
2/10/08 3:36 P

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Sounds like you are having fun! Keep it going!

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highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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GARDENERGAL
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2/7/08 3:07 P

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We're having such a mild winter that I find I'm now seizing every opportunity I can to get out there... even if it means scratching up the bottoms a bit on some unseen sticks & stones & stumps, rocks & roots & ruts (my chant as I trudge along). Two days of rain earlier this week washed away all the white stuff, but this morning I awoke to about 1.5 inches of fresh snow. With a little wax I was able to do some sliding, yay!


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KAYOTIC
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1/26/08 12:49 P

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I'm not sure how the ratings compare w/ the downhill vs XC. I know the hills are steeper the higher you go up the grade, but not as sustained. I think w/ the black diamond, there are also more turns involved w/ the hills. It does take some getting used to turning on the skinny skis, we use our tele skis at the downhill place, so the freeheels don't bother me so much, but I'm still pretty much stuck in a wedge for turning. According to my tele book, that is the first step in learning to turn on freeheels. I'd eventually like to get the tele turn down though.

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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GARDENERGAL
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1/25/08 12:26 A

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That sounds awesome, but I would be shy of the blue squares with my XC skis, never mind black diamonds! Are the ratings the same as for downhill skiing (same level of incline etc)? For some reason I'm not as comfortable turning on my XC's as I am on downhill skis... I'm used to just a slight change in weight making the skis turn, but the dynamics are quite a bit different when the heel is not fixed to the binding.


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KAYOTIC
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1/24/08 9:35 A

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You need to get out on the groomers when it's snowing. We did that on Monday and it was great, I even got down the double black diamond, since the falling was much easier with all that powder! The place we go doesn't allow dogs, but there is a groomed area in another nearby town that allows them on some of the runs.

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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GARDENERGAL
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1/23/08 11:53 P

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Rachelrun, you really are lucky to have a groomed trails so close by! But I know the feeling about wanting to have my dog with me as well... I went to an XC center a few weeks ago for a lesson & test drive on the groomed slopes. The conditions were a bit icy but I can just imagine how wonderful it would be with packed powder and that soft "corduroy" cover that the groomer machines make. I kept thinking how my lab would have loved to come along with me for the exercise and pure joy of being out there.

Back to my previous topic, I did try the glide application on my skis and it was fantastic, no more snow sticking to the bottoms.


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RACHELRUN
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1/22/08 8:31 A

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I admire you going out in the backcountry or your own field and setting tracks. Makes me feel pretty lucky to have a place nearby that grooms tracks for me. Their big machine sets perfect tracks in the snow for my beginner waxless skis to glide along as if I have been doing it for years. The only drawback is you aren't allowed to bring your dog to the groomed ski park. Whenever I feel procrastination before getting ready to ski, I just imagine that wonderful moment when you snap your boots into the skis and glide off into the woods. It's like saying goodbye to stress and entering a silent, beautiful snow land of peace. Coming back to hot chocolate or coffee in a thermos in the car tops it off perfectly and eases transition back into life. I know I will look back on these ski days during summer and fall with a romantic sigh, "ahhhhhhh".

Water is the new Coffee.


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KAYOTIC
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1/19/08 1:04 P

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hmmm, I guess it's condition dependent. Come to think of it, I have put wax on my "waxless" BC skis as well. Did you ski better w/ the wax?

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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GARDENERGAL
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1/15/08 10:28 P

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Well I learned something today... We finally got a skimpy 3 inches of snow on Monday, after a week of temps up to the 60's which caused all our old snow to melt away. But yesterday and today when I tried to XC ski on the little snow that we have, I got huge clots of snow stuck to the bottom of my skis, no glide whatsoever. I called the shop where I bought my skis and found out that in this type of snow I need wax (or what they call a "glide application") on my no wax skis! Go figure, I really didn't think wax worked on these.


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KAYOTIC
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1/1/08 2:39 P

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Gardenrgal, my first pair of skis was a really cheap pair of BC skis, and I took them to an XC groomed area w/ no problem, so you could probably use yours there if you wanted to.

I have now 4 different pairs of skis, so I use my skate skis at the XC area, it is a very aerobic workout, although I tend to snowplow down the hills rather than skate them, but the flats and gradual downhillls I can skate now. I'm trying to learn the tele turn to get down those pesky hills! One of these days....

Enjoy the snow!

Kay emoticon

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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GARDENERGAL
GARDENERGAL's Photo Posts: 502
1/1/08 1:49 P

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Rachaelrun, I agree that you would probably like XC skiing and should go for it if at all possible. From what I can see there's at least 3 different kinds of XC skiing: 1) the classical, where you follow in premade tracks and can pick up quite a bit of speed similar to biking 2) the skating technique, which appears to be the most aerobic as you "skate" both uphill and downhill over groomed trails and 3) back country skiing where you make your own trails in unpacked conditions. By default I've opted for the back country type, since I want to be able to just take off for long walks in the woods & fields near my house with my dog. Thus I bought wider (telemark-type) skis then would be used for either classical or skating. Mine don't go as fast but are much more stable going downhill and in a variety of deep snow conditions.


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KAYOTIC
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12/22/07 7:01 P

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We got out today, and it was great! For my first time out this season I picked it up pretty well, I thought.

I think you'd like XC, if you like the outdoors, and w/ an area that close you'll get a lot of use out of those skis! I would recommend the lessons, it may just give you enough technique to have a good time.

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



 current weight: 11.0  over
 
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RACHELRUN
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Posts: 125
12/22/07 12:36 P

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I'm surprised there isn't a SparkTeam for cross country skiers. It seems a unique and wonderful winter sport. I got a lot of enthusiasm from some of the running teams all summer and winter but now I'm feeling a little out in the cold since the heavy snows have chilled my running motivation. I've been sledding. I'm about to buy cross country skis because my town has a great groomed trail area. Seems to me that cross country is a lot like running as far as the enjoyment of outdoors and the steady cardio pacing.

Water is the new Coffee.


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GARDENERGAL
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12/20/07 4:42 P

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It snowed another inch or two last night so today at lunch I tried skiing on our plowed dirt road... it was great! I can just imagine what fun groomed trails must be. Our road has a steep part which I went down slightly out of control, lol, but now I'm gaining confidence that I can do this. I think once the holidays are overwith I may spring for a lesson so I don't pick up a lot of bad habits.


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KAYOTIC
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12/19/07 10:12 P

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If you have metal edges you should be able to weight the edge for the ice. You probably just need to practice this, but if I recall correctly you had downhill experience, so you probably know what I'm talking about. I think you're right about packing the snow down too, that will make it easier to ski w/out sinking down too much. Either that or find someone else to break the trail in for you!

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



 current weight: 11.0  over
 
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GARDENERGAL
GARDENERGAL's Photo Posts: 502
12/19/07 11:52 A

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Yes I purposely got the wider skis with a metal edge for the backcountry trails that I plan to take around my house. My problem is that we have about 15 inches of snow with an icy crusty surface, so my skis sink about 6-8 inches down below the crust. I have a feeling I may need to pack down a trail before I can venture out on it with skis... There are a couple of snowmobile tracks aleady made which might work except that I'd need something wider in order to slow myself down on the hilly parts. Gee, this isn't as easy as I'd dreamed!


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KAYOTIC
KAYOTIC's Photo Posts: 12,364
12/18/07 9:29 P

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Do your skis have metal edges? if so, they should cut thru the ice somewhat, but I hate icy conditions, that's what led to my breaking my ankle. My XC skis do not have edges, just skinny slippery skis on ice!

I guess that might require some further lessons, or advice from a more expert skier.

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



 current weight: 11.0  over
 
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0
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GARDENERGAL
GARDENERGAL's Photo Posts: 502
12/15/07 10:29 P

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OK, I've somewhat gotten comfortable with soft fluffy powder, but how do you handle crusty icy trails?


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GARDENERGAL
GARDENERGAL's Photo Posts: 502
12/8/07 4:32 P

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Thanks, Kayotic, for the words of encouragement. Today, for the first time, I got the courage to go down the steep slope. Of course the temps today were above freezing so the snow was slow and sticky, just fast enough for my virgin attempt down the mountain. My biggest challenge turned out to be my doggie, who kept darting right in front of me on the way down... argh! But all in all I'm having a ball with these new skiis...


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KAYOTIC
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12/7/07 8:46 P

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I'm so glad to hear you are having fun on those skis! Those bindings sound likke mine, I have Rossignol's and you have to release them all the way or you can't get the boot in.

If that steeper slope is powdery, it will be like falling in pillows (only if you fall!)

Have fun!

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



 current weight: 11.0  over
 
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GARDENERGAL
GARDENERGAL's Photo Posts: 502
12/5/07 8:59 A

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Woohoo, I did it! My first two attempts at XC skiing were a disaster: 1) On the first day of new snow I couldn't figure out how to step the boots into the bindings... even called the shop where I bought them but nothing they told me to try worked. Finally, late at night on the web I was reading about these specific bindings and figured out that I just wasn't opening the release far enough to open the clamp and let my boot fit in the slot. One down. 2) The next morning I eagerly put on the skis and began trekking across my driveway. Well it felt like I had velcro on the bottom of the skis. I even tried going down a little slope and nope, the left ski kept catching, wouldn't slide freely. When I took the skis off I realized that there was about 2 inches of snow and ice adhering to the bottom of my left ski. Lesson #2: Never leave your skis inside a warm house right before you want to use them!

Finally, later that day I tried for the third time and woohoo, this time things worked nicely and I love it! It's amazing how much faster you can travel with skis on then just plain walking. I can glide pretty well on the flats and go down very gentle slopes, but I haven't gotten the nerve yet to ski down the steep hill behind my house. Little by little...


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KAYOTIC
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12/2/07 2:07 P

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I guess you should just watch out for gettin the skis stuck in trees (roots or low branches) that can be hidden under the snow. You should be fine, but if you want some pointers, maybe check out some books at your library, they may have some XC tips in them. I got some books for tele skiing, and hope to incorporate some of those tips this year, if we ever get some snow!

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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GARDENERGAL
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12/2/07 1:17 P

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Hi Kayotic, thanks for the reply. I ultimately want to be able to go for long walks in the woods with my dog like we do the rest of the year. My terrain consists of lots of hills along with some open fields and narrow woodland paths. Most of it will be untracked snow except maybe for the footprints and snowshoe trails of a couple other walkers and a handful of dogs and deer.


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KAYOTIC
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12/1/07 11:44 P

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Given that you have skied before, and you are going on a flat area, I'd say give it a go, if you struggle, then go for lessons. What type of skiing are you going for? I have skate skis and backcountry w/ scales, so I do both, I don't particularly like the track skiing, that's how I broke my ankle! If you are on untracked fresh snow, you probably won't go that fast anyway, so have fun!

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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GARDENERGAL
GARDENERGAL's Photo Posts: 502
12/1/07 11:31 P

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Hi guys, glad to find this team! I just got my first pair of cross-country skis for my birthday in Oct and can't wait to try them out. I have a large, flat field in front of my house that hopefully should be great for practicing. My question is: can I go out by myself and play around with these skis as a rank beginner, or should I wait and take some lessons first? I've been a downhill skier for about 40 years now (yes, I just turned 61, groan). We're supposed to get our first major snowfall tomorrow night, so Monday & Tuesday before work you just know I'm going to be itching to give it a try.

Edited by: GARDENERGAL at: 12/1/2007 (23:32)

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KAYOTIC
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11/24/07 1:35 P

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I'm forgoing kayaking for the reason you gave, no new sports! (at least not until I've gotten some degree of competence in the ones I've recently taken up: skate skiing, tele skiing, mtn biking, climbing. The gear alone is costing me a fortune, I have no more room on top of my car for another sport rack!

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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VEGGIE_DON
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11/24/07 11:18 A

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I've been kicking, gliding and falling down for almost 30 years now. I haven't taken up skating as I've promised myself no more new sports.....at least not for another year or two. I'm mostly an off-track backcountry skier, places where I can take my dogs. I've done a little racing, but I'm not very good, nor fast. I'm just out to have fun in the beautiful winter forest.

Nice to see you!


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KAYOTIC
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11/24/07 10:56 A

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That's great Navelacademy! It's late Novemeber and I'm still waiting for the snow to come here. You'll have to get in a lap for me!

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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NAVELACADEMY
Posts: 521
11/21/07 1:58 A

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Hi...up here in the 'frozen north' of Canada, cross country skiing has been possible for most of the month already. I am the caretaker on a 1600 acre ranch and I have been setting tracks right outside my door. So far I have a huge clover-leaf of loops that gives me about 35 Km of track. And of course, every time it snows I am compelled to re-do all the loops to keep them open (no machinery is used to set my tracks---I do it on my skis) I am now skiing about 20 Km a day---and for a 61 yr old lady with only a handful of years of experience on skis, that is not bad!!

Either get on with living, or get on with dying--Shawshank Redemption by Stephen King
Tough situations go away. Tough people DON'T.


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KAYOTIC
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11/12/07 10:12 P

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Welcome to Spark! and the ski team. I have a season pass to a XC area, so I suppose that qualifies. I've taken up skating recently (the last couple of years) and completed my first ski race/tour last year, 30K in just under 4 hours. It is such a good cardio!

I heard on the news today the first ski area around here opened one run today w/ about 6 inches of manmade snow. At least it's something.

highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143

New goal: 125 lbs, just to see what that looks and feels like! Hit it: Feb 2013!

H: 5''4" 49 y.o.

"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers

"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan



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SPLAMO
Posts: 36
11/12/07 6:12 A

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Hello everyone,
I am new to this site.
I hope I can reach my goals with a little help from snow. Cant wait for it...about a month and a half if I'm lucky.
Good luck everyone.


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