We love the bold, beautiful spirit of professional skier and Olympic hopeful Annie Pokorny. Bolder Band Headband wants to follow her through the trials and tribulations and elation of training for the big show: the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea. Every month Annie will share some insight into her training so we can train along with her and follow our dreams as well.
Annie Pokorny , 21: I am from Spokane, Washington but living and training in Stratton Mountain, Vermont. I am a professional Nordic skier for SMS T2 in Stratton Mountain, VT. When I’m not skiing my pants off, I’m studying philosophy at Middlebury College and making waffles in my cozy socks.
SMS T2 is a professional Nordic ski team based out of Stratton Mountain, Vermont. I am one of eight athletes, five women and three men. Of the eight of us, five are on the US Ski Team, including four Olympians and one World Champion.
Major victories: Junior National Champion, US Nationals Top 5, World U23 Championships Top 30
Motto of the month: Inhale confidence, exhale doubt.
I'll be racing on the international circuit all month, partaking in more competitive racing than I have all year, and the best way to keep it in the game is to enter each race with confidence. If you step to the line without confidence, you've already given yourself an excuse to lose.
Exercise of the month: Meditation At this time of year, we've done all of our base fitness training and spend our weeks racing, resting, and traveling. A stable mind is the first step to a stable heart, so I find that the best way to cool off the nerves or travel stress is 10-15 minutes of relaxed, deep breathing.
Band of the month: Recon Colder Band
Fuel of the month: Trail mix! When I travel, I need a constant source of protein, carbs and sugar to keep from missing trains or getting sick. That makes GORP (trail mix) my go-to.
Challenge I overcame in January: January started with US Nationals, races I've had my eye on since May. With big goals and faith in my training, I entered the races confident and ready to rock. The first race didn't go as well as I'd hoped, and each subsequent race suffered as I lost confidence throughout the week.
In the final race, I was in a position where I had to do better than I had all week in order to qualify for U23 World Championships. As I stepped to the line, I had to choose between counting the reasons I wouldn't do well and the reasons that I would. I chose the latter, and pushed it to the line, landing higher than I ever had in that discipline. I made the U23 team and promised myself to treat each race like a new day, going into it with clear mind and full heart, no matter what happened the day before (see motto of the month).
I placed 13th, 21st, 17th and 18 th, all of which qualified me for world U23s as the third best u23 in the country, so it actually wasn't that bad, I just wanted to get top 1 instead of top 20.
Goals for February: I write from the Hotel Kazakhstan in Almaty, Kazakhstan where I will be racing in the U23 World Championships. It's my third year here, and I want to make the third time the charm and score in the top 10 and top 15 in distance and sprint racing.
February Locales: Almaty, Kazakhstan/Nove Mesto, Czech Republic/Campra, Switzerland/Rogla Slovenia
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