I've mainly been skiing! My Autumn's for the last few years have always been focused on race training for my final ski instructor exams, which I've finally completed!! For those who know, I've been working my way up through the levels (annoyingly I'm too competitive with myself to stop till I reach the top) and I'm now done, I'm pleased to say! ;-) 

Passionate about skiing, we've grown our Winter Ski Fit Retreats this winter here in Verbier and it's be fantastic to take clients uphill for once! Giving them a chance to experience the mountains in a new way, raising their heart rates, teaching them the specific ski touring techniques to make them more efficient and most importantly giving them a good workout!! 


I tried something new just last week by entering a skimo race (ski mountaineering - basically going uphill on skis as fast as you can and then skiing down on these super lightweight skis, over bumpy, icy terrain! Makes for some hilarious ski 'styles' coming down) and I learnt a very good lesson!.. 

The realisation that completing a race/event without any time or goal pressure can make it much more enjoyable, doesn't set you up for disappointment and makes the duration a lot more fun.. I've finally realised the most important aspect sometimes is taking part & enjoying the sport for what it is, rather than adding pressure & worry.

With a spontaneous decision to take part in this skimo race last Saturday, I was unprepared and hadn't thought of a timed goal for this event. I didn't even have all the race regulated equipment which hadn't even crossed my mind when signing up, so had to beg & borrow from friends! A clear example of all the gear & no idea.. ish!  Complete opposite to how I'd usually approach a race or challenge, and it was quite refreshing! Usually one to beat myself up about going my fastest, getting within a certain position of other competitors etc, this had always put way too much pressure on me, leading up to a race and during it. The end result being.. I'm usually left feeling deflated and wishing I had gone even faster.. basically always chasing a higher goal each time. But having no expectations made this race so much more enjoyable.. maybe it was down to doing it with a client, who is always up for a challenge, having some time to do something for myself in a long time (winter season in Verbier is busy busy) Or the fact it was a beautiful sunny day.. who knows but I'm sure most of the enjoyment came from putting no pressure on ourselves to hit a certain time or come within a certain place in the pack.. it left us to enjoy the ride, take in the views and just go with the flow.. something I'm trying to master now! 


So it's taken time but finally I've learnt a new approach, that it's not always about a time or position, but more importantly about taking part and enjoying the sport because it makes you feel good, clears the head and it's still getting the fitness done. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying to give up all timed goals and targets each time you train or compete, but just try to mix it up.. you may find it leaves you in a far better state mentally than before, which is an important aspect of your health. So if this sounds familiar, then try it out for yourself.. it's liberating!

Now for the next skimo race to book onto ;-) The lycra's coming out!