Wednesday, February 18, 2015

X-Country Skiing

Top front row in a doubledecker bus to Kotka.

Cross-country skiing is one of the best cross-training methods in winter. However the weather in Helsinki wasn't great for that so we traveled east to Kotka. There we found everything just right: plenty of snow and sunshine, below-zero temperatures, and good tracks in gentle landscapes.

Fantastic sunrise from our balcony.

Fabulous skiing in Kotka.

Perfect skiing weather!

Following some animal tracks just before sunset.

Magnificent dawn.

Cross-training at its best.

Skiing in the shadow of big trees.

Clear blue sky.

Bonus video shot with GoPro Hero4 at 2.7K (please adjust settings for best quality).

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Epic Day at the Office

Lots of snow and ice in the forest.

It was an epic day at the office today. 2400 meters swim, 26.1 km trail run and 111.2 km bike on indoor trainer in 13 hours 44 mins total time for everything.  Check out these cool pics from the run!

Pirunkallio (Devil's Rock) ice climbing venue. The ice seemed too soft for climbing though.

The trail up Pirunkallio.

Climbing up Pirunkallio.

Above the trees at Pirunkallio.

The view to the river from the top.

I hate sitting down, but couldn't resist trying since I found this office chair.

Bouldering up Pihlajamäki.

Stairway to the top.

Snow was easy to run with Hokas, but ice slowed me down a lot.

Urban jungle: can you see the bridge in the background?

Standing on the edge - looking down to the river about 7m below.  

Big pines.

Lunch break (had some food in my backpack).

Save the woods: the city plans to build houses in the forests marked red.

Top of Taivaskallio: the key WW2 air defense location.

Nice trails and views high up.

All this snow won't melt away in a week or two.

Bouldering crags around Taivaskallio waiting for summer. 

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Ready to run TransGranCanaria

Today has been a great day. First my Medical Certificate for TransGranCanaria was validated, meaning I'm 'Ready to run' 125km with 8,500 meters elevation gain in 30 hours on March 6-8.

Secondly I did my personal winter triathlon test today. This 'Half-GRT' consisted of 1200m swim in a 25m pool, 55.6km cycling with Cervelo P3 bike on Taxc Bushido trainer, and a 13km run on the nearby 3km icy forest trail loop. The purpose of this personal test is that it allows me to observe the changes in my overall fitness over time.

Long story short, I set a new incredible PR today with 3h52min. This is a whopping 40-min improvement to my previous PR set in January - which had already been one hour and a quarter faster than my 5:47 PR posted in December 2014. For comparison my best time last winter was 6:51. I charted this unbelievable progress below.

So it seems I really am "Ready to run" as they state on the TransGranCanaria website!