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  • The off-season
    I paddle from the Spring Equinox to the Winter Solstice, then I let my boats lay fallow for a season. They receive a well-deserved rest, while other activities take up my time.
  • A sister remembers
    I greeted friends, former co-workers, students and neighbors for over four hours at her funeral. It was harder than any race we ever did together because this time she wasn’t there, let alone running or skiing, alongside me.
  • Biking in a winter wonderland
    With all the complaining I do about riding in the extreme cold, you may be surprised that I help out with the group Madison Bike Winter. Yes, I actually ride with and plan events for a group that counts down the days until the winter solstice in June.
  • Not my day

    Wham! I slammed face first into the stern of a kayak. The paddler, part of the swim support crew, had entered the swim zone to attend to another struggling swimmer. Trying to regain my composure and wipe away the blood streaming from my nose, I moved on. That was only the first of several crashes that day.

  • Skiing in the lab
    Central Cross Country Skiing has a tool that will not only bring Nordic skiers down to earth but also show them ways to ski more efficiently on it: a rollerski treadmill.
  • Wanted: More women in cyclocross
    The women who embrace the mud, the make-your-lungs-bleed intensity and the craziness of cyclocross, don’t feel neglected, but they do have a few ideas on the reasons behind their small numbers.
    
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  • Warming to McMiller again
    The new 30-foot by 40-foot building near the McMiller Sports Center, south of Eagle, Wisconsin, is modeled after a similar shelter opened in 2012 on the Zillmer Trails in the northern unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest. It’s scheduled to open in time for the 2014-2015 ski season. 
  • Kayak-access campsites unveiled at Point Beach State Forest
    Kayakers joined state and federal officials on September 24 to celebrate the unveiling of two new water-access, kayak campsites at Point Beach State Forest, highlighting the emerging popularity of Wisconsin’s Lake Michigan State Water Trail. 
THE ACTIVE PURSUIT
with Tom Held
An image.
An image.
An image.
CONTRIBUTING EDITORS
  • Training on rainy days
    XC Skiing with Mitch Mode
    I have learned to take comfort on rainy days when dawn brings grayness and haze settles on the land as a heavy blanket. 
  • Hill Climbing 101
    BEHIND THE BARS with Kierstin Kloeckner
    As a trainer and cycling coach, I am constantly urging clients who don’t like hills to give them another shot. After all, is riding through flat cornfields day after day really that much fun? By learning to embrace climbing, a whole new world opens up. 
  • Acquired skills
    XC SKIING with Mitch Mode
     None of this is instinctive. We are not born accomplished skiers. It is an acquired skill. Technique is the driver. Without it we flail, energy wasted. Our enthusiasm may know no bounds, but bad technique is an open window as the furnace runs hot. Technique comes with time and with work. It is malleable, changing form as our experience grows. We may be born to ski but we are not born competent skiers. 
  • The way of the blade
    PADDLING with Darren Bush
    There are no right or wrong paddles. If you are a fan of big blades for flatwater paddling, then more power (literally) to you. Do you like skinny little Greenland kayak paddles? By all means, use them. Like a bent shaft canoe paddle or a traditional willow-leaf design? Good for you. As the French say, 
    à chacun son goût
    .
     
  • The best Birkie ever
    FOOTLOOSE with Bruce Steinberg
    Carol and I raised over $6,500 in pledges for a clinic that specialized in macular degeneration research. All I had to do was finish the 1994 Birkie filled with the calamities; calamities that paled in comparison to what Carol and other sufferers of macular degeneration have to cope with every day.
     
  • Quenching your thirst
    GEAR with Lou Dzierzak
    There are more options than ever to carry water with you on your adventures. Once limited to heavy plastic bottles stored in hip belt holsters, athletes can now choose from handhelds, belts with multiple bottles and lightweight technical vests.
     
  • Movin’ Shoes
    RUNNING with Tom Kaufman
    The initial inventory of Movin’ Shoes was four pairs of shoes hanging on a peg board. The first running shoes sold were Tiger Nylon and Leather Cortez. These were soon followed by Blue Ribbon Sports’ (Nike) Nylon and Leather Cortez. The cost of those first running shoes? About $15.
     
  • Do endurance athletes need supplements?

    NUTRITION with Donna Marlor
    Although one in four Americans regularly uses supplements, most endurance athletes are at low risk for developing a severe clinical deficiency from a lack of nutrients. The real issue is probably one of optimal performance and recovery. Could you benefit from antioxidant supplements? Perhaps.

     
BLOGGERS
  • DNR to look into snowmobiles returning to Blue Mound State Park
    DNR: A proposal to reopen a long-abandoned snowmobile trail through Blue Mound State Park will be considered as part of a master plan amendment process approved by the state Natural Resources Board meeting in Madison. 
  • SNEAK PEEK: January 2015 issue
    Coming in the January print edition of Silent Sports, how to turn young people on to Nordic skiing and mountain biking, how to improve your double poling technique, snowshoeing in the backcountry versus the frontcountry and why a marathoner can't quit smoking. 
PHOTO GALLERIES
VIDEOS
E Cycling Wisconsin
West Coast represent, Edwin Gonzales. Cycling Dane County, Wisconsin, August 2012 Music Credit: State of Yo, Brand New Heavies, Heavy Rhyme Experience Vol. 1
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