In December, I asked my dad if I could cross-country ski with him on winter weekends. He’s been practicing this sport for 30 years and still loves it, so why wouldn’t I?
I have cross-country skied every single weekend ever since. At around 10AM, my dad picks me up and we drive for about 35 minutes to a cross-skiing park nearby. Often, my little brother comes along and we’ll go for brunch afterwards. Pancakes with tons of pure quebec maple syrup are our reward: yum!
The benefits of cross-country skiing are endless! But for the always-cold girl that I am, the main one is that you’ll never be cold! You’ll literally sweat when it’s -20 degrees celcius!
When you’ve purchased or rented your skis, it’s very cheap to practice. Sometimes the trails are free, but usually it costs around $12 to ski.
– It’s a TOTAL BODY WORKOUT!! You use muscles all over: in arms and legs of course, but also your core (you use abs for balance!). And your butt will hurt the next day…this is a great way to get ready for bikini getaways down south or winter spa sessions…
– It’s a low-impact workout, so you won’t overstress any muscle group, nor create shocks on body parts (like you can on your knees when running) and you’ll be able to go on for hours. I ski for about 12km now (after 4 times).
– You’ll improve endurance and burn tons of calories!
Tips for beginners:
– Use waxable skis, you’ll go faster than on waxless ones.
– Don’t be afraid to propel yourself forward and to use your arms a lot. To smoothly move forward, I bend my toes, push my heel back and the ski with it. When my foot comes back forward, the ski comes back. Find your rhythm and follow it!
– Bend your knees when going down a slope. If you don’t, you might fall backwards, even if you’re a pro alpine skier, trust me…
Cross-country skiing trails near Montreal:
Here are the four cross-skiing centers I tried. I ranked them in terms of the beauty of nature:
Cross-country skiing made me fall in love with winter all over again! Will you?