The defending FIS Tour de Ski winner is getting ready for the forthcoming season. Her summer has included a few major milestones.
Right after the end of the World Cup season, Justyna Kowalczyk underwent an arthroscopic knee surgery in Warsaw. Her knee problems began last summer during a training camp in Zakopane. The problems got worse during the Tour but the Polish ace decided to wait with the surgery until the end of the season.
The recuperation went fast and the triple FIS Tour de Ski winner returned to training in early May. Doctors wanted her to wait a few days longer but Kowalczyk replied she would not get ready for the World Championships at a clinic. In spite of the surgery, Kowalczyk resumed training even earlier than in the years before.
The training schedule of Justyna Kowalczyk was fully packed month after moth. In June she trained with her training partner Maciej Krieczmer in Italy and Switzerland. After a few days at home packed with sponsor obligations, Kowalczyk hit the road again in early July for another training camp, this time at her favorite training and racing resort Otepää. The well-known World Cup venue offers great training possibilities ranging from roller skiing to mountain biking and running.
If a Cross-Country athlete wants to go skiing on snow in the middle of the summer, there are not many options in Europe. The options include a glacier, a ski tunnel or travelling down-under. As last year, Justyna Kowalczyk went for the third option and at the end of July she set out for a 17’000 km-long journey to New Zealand.
She was not disappointed and could enjoy great snow conditions at Snow Farm, which lies 1500m above the sea level and offers 55 km of Cross-Country Skiing trails. Russian, Canadian and U.S. Cross-Country teams spent part of the training camps there and took part in the Australian/New Zealand Cup. Justyna Kowalczyk was also at the start and scored a hat trick as she powered to wins in 10 km classic, free technique sprint and 5 km free. She also took part in the Muster Marathon and winter triathlon.
September at home
In September Justyna Kowalczyk has been training in Poland. Originally she planned to go to train in Spain but together with her coach Alexander Wierietielny she has decided to stay in Poland. Based in Zakopane, she kicked off the three-week training camp at the beginning of the month. Strength has been a focus of the triple FIS Tour de Ski champion in the form of roller skiing and strength workouts, but running too has been on the training schedule. Training at home is always special for Justyna Kowalczyk who said on her website: “After fifteen years of travelling it is very nice to overcome the homesickness little bit.”
You can find out more about Justyna Kowalczyk at http://www.justyna-kowalczyk.pl