I have now been in Alaska for four weeks! It’s crazy to me how fast time goes by when all you do is eat sleep and train. I have been absolutely inspired since arriving. The mountains are majestic, the views of the coast are beautiful, and the landscape is breath taking. Training with APU has opened my eyes in a few short weeks to what it means to be a professional skier. I am humbled to be working with Erik Flora. Flora is one of the most passionate people I have ever met in regards to this sport. On runs, he not only keeps up, but often pushes the pace (I’m talking 6-7 minute miles for 90 minutes), all the while rambling on about how amazing the Kenyan runners are and how their system is beneficial as a training model. On roller skis, rather than overhaul your whole technical style, Flora will simply give a few pointers and have you ski behind each other, gaining each other’s strengths and learning from each other’s weaknesses. The men’s team is probably the most motivated and fun young group of skiers I have ever been around. Almost all of them have some form of National Championship medal or podium, and a very “fresh” attitude towards training and competition. They are beginning their respective journeys towards future U23 World Championships, World Championships, and the 2018 Olympics.
It is no surprise to me that this team has been successful on the Supertour and it would shock me if they did not continue to dominate it over the next few years. Every training session I feel I take away something and I am constantly motivated to better myself. While skiing is an individual sport, I find a special sense that the future of US Skiing, especially on the men’s side, is being build right in front of my eyes and I feel honored to be a part of it.
-Posted by Kyle Bratrud on Jun 14th 2014