The Best Workout

There is snow all around us it seems, but none in Eastern Ontario yet. Almost everyone here is grateful for that, but we snowshoers are getting impatient, tapping our toes and willing the green on the Doppler to turn blue, dammit, blue!

Derrick and I are into a hill workout phase of our training which is at least giving us some solid preparation for the snowshoe running season.

I love the variety that speed or hill workouts lend to training. I also crave the incredible high and deep satisfaction they give you. It’s that same exhilaration you get from snowshoeing through really deep snow – heart pounding, sweating in your self-created micro climate, legs growing wobbly from the exertion. And afterwards, the bliss of being done.

If you have snow where you live already, I hope you are having fun in it. We have some catching up to do here. In the meantime, the best workout is the one you are currently enjoying.


For pre-season snowshoe advice, including hill training tips, see Derrick’s Ask The Coach column.

About the author

Sara Montgomery and Derrick Spafford

Derrick and Sara are trail runners from Eastern Ontario who discovered that running on snowshoes in the winter months is a great way to enjoy their favorite trails year-round. They competed in their first snowshoe series (The Mad Trapper Series in Low, Quebec) in 2005, each finishing 2nd in their respective divisions. Plans for 2006 are to return to the Mad Trapper, to take in some races in New York and Vermont, and hopefully cap their season with the U.S. Snowshoe Championships in March, as Canadian guests. Derrick runs a company, Spafford Health and Adventure (, which specializes in coaching and event promotion. He is currently planning an annual snowshoe race to be held in the Kingston area, starting this winter.

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