November 20, 2009: Expanding My Speed Comfort Zone

Keystone Resort, Colorado – Today I decided to try a different mountain to mix things up and experience different terrain. Keystone Mountain, just 10 minutes from Arapahoe Basin, offered very long, leg-burning runs, a variety of pitches, and really fun winding slopes. I had a blast.

There were only a few areas where I could focus on technical stuff. Actually that’s not true because technically I could focus on technical riding for most of the length of the runs, but I had so much fun going fast and testing my comfort limits with speed that it became the focus of the day. Going as fast as I was comfortable with, and then going a bit faster and making big sweeping turns to see how the board reacted under speed. And thankfully no mishaps.

There were a few really great pitches for technique that had a nice consistent steepness (of course the perfect Colorado man-made and natural snow helped a lot). On those I focused on getting high edge angle early and extending the legs through the turn. I didn’t get the same Zone-like feeling that I did yesterday, probably because my speed was a bit faster, but I felt solid and confident and trusted the equipment. On the pitch I had to remind myself to get forward since it’s so easy to get thrown in the backseat and just stay there, but I had some really nice, fast turns. It felt great and I didn’t even think about my boots.

So it was another great day of freeriding! I expanded my comfort zone with speed, gained more trust with my equipment and worked on technical stuff on the steeps. And I had so much fun again doing it. It’s so weird to think that I haven’t had this much fun freeriding in my ten years of racing. It’s great to know that racing and training can still be fun.

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