For U.S. Freestyle Ski Team moguls skier Heather McPhie (Park City, UT), the summer has been a long one full of training, family and new places. The following is the 2007 FIS Rookie of the Year's account of what it's like to be a winter athlete during the summer.
I thought it would be interesting to do a quick flashback of my "off" season to date.
This past season was one of the longest both physically and emotionally for me. So, when Nationals was over, I hopped on a plane to meet my new nephew and spent three incredible weeks with my sister, her husband Stu, and the new addition... Coby!
I recharged my battery, rehabbed my knee (having a PT for a sister is great!), and got some wonderful perspective on life outside of skiing. This trip included a quick visit back to Salt Lake City for LASIK eye surgery, which has, to sound cliché, changed my life (thanks Hoopes Vision Center, and my grandparents for taking such good care of me).
From there I went home to Park City, UT, then was off to my first strength and conditioning camp in San Diego. We stayed at the Olympic Training Center, and I was humbled by the ocean, incredibly fatigued, and became closer to my teammates through the experience! Next stop water ramps and on snow jumping camp in Colorado, followed by a long stretch in Park City at the gym with our new strength and conditioning coach.
This summer so far I have also gotten to go back to Montana twice, once for a weekend back to Bozeman, MT (highlight, horseback riding with my dad), and once for Eagle Store's 100th year in business celebration.
Another first for me this summer was a trip to Mt. Hood, OR. Apparently you can't consider yourself a true freestyler unless you have been to Mt. Hood in the summer... so ten years after I started competing... I'm official! Camp was great, and afterwards I spent a couple days in Portland and got to go rock climbing outside for the first time in years (thanks Kevin)!
From there, I was homeward bound to prepare for Chile, while moving back into the place my parents and I bought in Park City four years ago (thanks mom and dad for bringing back the furniture and remodeling the bathroom), it is so nice to feel like I have a place to call home.
Finally, I went to Chile with almost the entire U.S. Freestyle Ski Team (we missed you Jillian, Jimmy, and Holt). Besides the fact that I was SO excited to eat good food when I got home, the trip was incredible. We were at approximately 12,000 feet, with absolutely gorgeous views. Besides that, our coaches did a wonderful job putting together a full mogul course, and four extra airs, so we got plenty of training.
During the camp, I tested out new adjustments to my ski boots (thanks Dude and crew at Cole Sports), tested out the mamba's by K2 (thanks Todd), and threw a new jump, for the first time in at least four years. My new trick is a back-full, which is a layed out back flip with a full twist. It was really exciting to have my hard work on the water ramps pay off!
What next? Back to Park City... for two whole days! From there... boating with my family in Montana, and then back to the weights and water ramping in Park City for the month of September.