Name: Erin Ward
Home Base: St Paul, MN
Occupation: Pyschiatric Research, SAT/ACT Tutor
Years on Atlas Racing: 1
Never one to enjoy temperatures below 70 degrees, I needed a way to add some fun and variety to my winter training apart from playing with the speed on my treadmill or adding another layer to my six existing layers on a run outside. On a whim I decided to participate in a snowshoe race, which represented a loophole in my "No racing in temperatures under 30 degrees" policy. The experience wasn't as bad as I had feared, so I decided to go to Nationals that year in Utah, held at 8,000 feet. That race was worse than I feared - so I was hooked.
After switching to Atlas racing snowshoes last year, I was pleased to discover that I could finish races with far fewer bruises and less blood around my ankle region, which only added to the appeal of the sport. I was also able to beat Cindy Brochman in a snowshoe race for the first blissful time, which I imagined would quiet down her trash-talking (it didn't - she can pick me up and throw me in snowbanks). My pinnacle achievement was placing a surprising fourth in the National Snowshoe Championships in my home state of Minnesota in 2007. The snow was packed down so hard due to the warm weather that the race resembled a road race, which suited me fine! I hope to do much more snowshoe racing and mountain running in the future in an effort to toughen up this Midwestern gal!
Set PR in January marathon.
Embrace the winter - whine less about the crippling Minnesota cold.
Stay healthy and avoid injuries that plagued most/all of 2008.
Continue to enjoy training and racing and dreaming about great performances.