Volée
January 14, 2014

Spring Training Camp, A Tale of Two Nests!

Kristin Metcalf

So many of you may have already noticed through Twitter that we have Oiselle women flying south for the winter! That's right - that's what birds do - fly south for warmth and sunshine. Our Little Wing women from Bend, OR consisting of Mel Lawrence, Christine Babcock, and Lauren Fleshman are spending time in Phoenix, Arizona. If you have been following closely the Little Wing consists of one more..Betsy Flood. Well, Betsy really took that idea to its fullest..she flew all the way to Australia and then will join them soon. Also joining them for three weeks all the way from State College, PA is 10k superstar, Kara Foster. The other nest of Oiselle fasties consists of Lauren Penney, Amanda Winslow and Kate Grace. Along with other NJNY superstars these women are spending some of the winter months soaking it up in San Antonio, Texas. 

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In two weeks all of these women will leave their winter abodes for a quick test of their training where they will compete at the UW Invite. Last year at this time HQ was welcoming to the Dempsey for the first time both Kate and Kara - well first time in a Oiselle uniform in the Dempsey..Kara was here during her Penn State days. Our cheer section last year was pretty darn good, but imagine how excited our Washington crowd of team members and Oiselle HQ staff will be with this lineup out there racing! Stay tuned the week of the 27th for meet lineup information and race schedule

This week we spent some time catching up with both groups so that we could give you a glimpse into their lives at camp!

Kristin: When did you arrive in Phoenix? 

Little Wing: We caravaned from LA to Phoenix on January 3rd.  It was quite an adventure...we got In-n-out for lunch, had Christine’s car towed within the first 15 minutes of our arrival to Tempe, and after a goose chase to get the car back, we topped off the day with Chipotle for dinner.  

Kristin: Why are you in Phoenix? What purpose does going to an atmosphere like this serve in your overall training and yearly plan?

Little Wing: The winters in Bend can be pretty cold and unpredictable, so going to a place like Phoenix ensures nice training conditions. Also, its good to mix things up in new environments to keep it fresh and help you remain focused. Part of being a pro athlete is learning to be comfortable on the road living out of a bag. That’s what competing around the world requires, and training camp is practice for that!

Kristin: Give us an idea of what your daily schedule looks like since you arrived?

Little Wing: A typical day starts with a 7am alarm (except Lauren who has the Jude alarm) and some breakfast. By 9am we are off and running either on a trail or track, depending on the day. We chow on Picky Bars, stretch, shoot the breeze and then head home for some down time.

The afternoons usually consist of resting, eating, reading, writing, tanning (so far unsuccessfully) and playing with Jude. Most days we run again around 4pm or pump some iron before making dinner, talking about life, and hitting the sack. Ideally there is at least one or two showers in there, energy permitting.

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Kristin: What seems to be the best part about training together in a different city and with your teammates?

Little Wing: The best part about training in Arizona, besides the obvious benefit of the warm weather, is exploring the playground of new trails and courses to run. Exploration with others creates a really strong bond, and stirs up excitement for our big dreams.

Kristin: Tell us a little bit about the two best activities/shenanigans you three have done since arriving there? 

LIttle Wing: #1: It has been a blast to meet up with fellow Oiselle enthusiasts and team members for runs, meals, or hang time. It is amazing the ties that running creates and the friends it brings into our lives. Our long run last weekend had 2 babies, 4 moms, a bro bird and two 11 year olds added to the mix! 

#2: After a run at Papago Park with Kerry Camberg, she took us to a lookout point called, “Hole in the Rock”. We befriended some fellow hikers from England, one of whom turned out to be a brilliant 800m runner back in the 70’s, Mike Winfield. As it turned out, we learned that back in his day, over tea, he was asked by THE Sebastian Coe to be his training partner! Mike declined and the next year Sebastian Coe set the world record, which he shared a laugh with us over. He had watched Lauren race at Crystal Palace on TV twice! What a small world! 

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Kristin: When do you head to Seattle? And what are you most looking forward to about that trip?

Little Wing: We are flying in on Tuesday night the 28th and we cannot wait!!!

CB:  I am excited to be back at my old stomping grounds; seeing my friends, teammates, and coaches at UW; and racing at the Dempsey.  I am also looking forwards to experiencing the gusto of the Oiselle cheering section at the Dempsey, as I hear it is epic!

ML: I’m looking forward to being back in Seattle, (my favorite city) and being surrounded by the support that is there from Oiselle and old friends. I can’t wait to get back into the Dempsey and be apart of the energetic racing environment that it has.

LF: I’ll be in Seattle from Tues-Sun of race week for what I hope is a very productive week! As for racing, I won’t really be on my A game for a few months, but I can’t resist giving it a shot when the whole nest is coming to cheer! The rest of the week I hope to take care of some really important business: seeing my favorite hair stylist for a little freshening up, for starters, and then with the bird nest on my head tamed, I’ll be able to focus on design projects with Sally and her team and whatever else they’ve got cooked up. I’m really hoping to get a yoga program for 2014 sorted with Erin at Jasyoga while I’m in town too.

 

San Antonio Group:

Kristin: When did you arrive in San Antonio? 

LP: Getting here was a little bit of a challenge for Amanda and me because of a snowstorm in New Jersey (a nice cold little reminder of why we were heading out of the northeast). We were supposed to fly out on Friday, January 3rd, but once flights were canceled, rescheduled, and delayed, we made it here late on Monday, January 6th. Kate got into town Saturday, January 4th and was able to welcome us at the airport! 

Kristin: Why are you in San Antonio? What purpose does going to an atmosphere like this serve in your overall training and yearly plan? 

AW: We are here first and foremost for quality training, and the warm weather is much better for that than tight indoor tracks, or the dreaded treadmill. Its also a time to get back into serious mode, but balance that with fun team bonding. 

Kristin: Give us an idea of what your daily schedule looks like since you arrived? 

AW: Morning: Wake up and enjoy the usual oatmeal and coffee combo then an hour later wake up Kate, workout #1 (Morning run, swim or Eliptigo), lunch and maybe hit up Local coffee shop, nap or Netflix (Friday Night Lights of course), some fun activity such as the nail salon or a trip to the Alamo, workout #2: (Another run, swim, Elliptigo, weights, core, and or yoga), dinner: most likely tex mex, still hoping to try some good 'ol Texas BBQ, along with conversations about the usual runner stuff, (including the unavoidable subject of runner digestive issues!), movie/tv and then bed in time for 8-10 hour sleeps! 

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Kristin: What seems to be the best part about training together in a different city and with your teammates? 

KG: There is nothing like the camaraderie of teammates in a new place to invigorate training. It's great getting to know each other on a closer level (literally... living one room down). And there is a natural bonding as we figure out the ropes (where is practice, how do we navigate these super grocery stores, who's making dinner, who gets to pick the songs!). We are here to get on a routine, get work done. Hard work and monotony is the goal. But add a new city to that mix, with new places to explore on each run, new running partners to meet, and suddenly that goal is fun, not so ... hard and monotonous.

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Kristin: Tell us a little bit about the two best activities/shenanigans you three have done since arriving there? 

LP: Austin was a pretty sweet adventure, but more details on that later... 

1. We cooked dinner for Rose Monday last night as a thank you for everything she has done for us here.  She is a wonderful woman to be able to spend some extra time with and talk to about running and training.  

2. An afternoon in downtown San Antonio where we visited the Alamo and the River Walk.  I don't think a trip here would have been complete without it.  It's pretty cool to have a little piece of history preserved in the middle of the modern buildings in the city.  

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Kristin: How was Austin? What did you do there? 

KG: Paraphrasing a friend: Austin is great if you like good food, good music, and no sleep. We had an awesome time, and also decided that it's probably a good thing we are living in San Antonio. We did it all: ran on the beautiful dirt path around the lake; swam at an outdoor pool (it helped that it was a gorgeous 70 degrees that day); tried breakfast tacos for the first time (we have to bring these back to NJ), saw Whole Foods headquarters (I didn't get a picture. I may have to drive back for one); and checked out the bars on the famous, raucous, Sixth Street. We got the inside scoop from Oiselle sales rep Sara Stewart Stevens, and the Flotrack guys. The only thing we didn't try, our main goal for the trip, was line dancing. Luckily, we've found a place in San Antonio, and there's a Ladies night!

Kristin: When do you head to Seattle? And what are you most looking forward to about that trip? 

LP: We'll fly to Seattle on Wednesday, January 29.  I'm most excited about the race and having my season debut in a place with so much Oiselle love. I've raced at Dempsey twice before and I really liked Seattle, but I'm really looking forward to visiting the Nest and having a bunch of Haute Volée ladies all in one place.

AW: I'm most looking forward to my first pro indoor race, where we'll have plenty of "super fans" to cheer us on! And of course I can't wait to see the whole gang at the HQ! 

KG: EEeeeee. I'm so excited that I get to jump in on this trip. It was a bit of a last minute decision, when we realized that so many other athletes would be in town. And I am ecstatic that it worked out. Running-wise, I'll be rabbiting at the Dempsey, which is great practice to get more comfortable leading races. But, I mean, the excitement comes from getting to spend the weekend with my run family (HQ et al.). It will be so cool to share that feeling with Lauren and Amanda.

 

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