A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan

A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan

The 2018-2019 Biathlon season was a memorable one for Clare Egan. The American battled past retirement thoughts after the Pyeongchang Olympics to find the best form of her life and finish the season with a career first ever podium in the winter-sports temple of Holmenkollen. The 31-year-old from Maine has just returned to the States after a series of training overseas, so she is giving us a little insight what biathlon training is like on the East Coast during summer.

​Being an athlete is hard work, but it is also a privilege to have a strong, healthy body and it’s a gift to be able to use it.

This week, I am at a US women’s National Team training camp in Craftsbury, Vermont, USA. We are staying at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center, which is hotel and training site that sponsors a team of elite cross-country-skiers and biathletes called the Green Racing Project. I lived and trained here for four years between 2011 and 2014 as a cross-country skier, so for me it feels like coming home.

When I am not at a training camp I prefer to sleep in and train around 10:00, but during our team camps we usually start at 8:30. I wake up at 7:15 and eat a breakfast of oatmeal and tea. One of my favorite things about the Craftsbury Outdoor Center is the delicious food, which is organic and locally-sourced. And I don’t have to shop or cook!

This morning we did a long (3.5 hours) hike. This week we have an international training partner, Johanna Talihaerm of Estonia, who has trained for several summers with the Green Racing Project. We don’t have very many international biathletes visiting the US, so we are very lucky to train with Johanna!

A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan

[Right to Left: Susan Dunklee, Clare Egan, Johanna Talliharm (Estonia) on Mount Pisgah, overlooking Lake Willoughby.]

After the hike we went swimming in Lake Willoughby and then went back to Craftsbury for lunch. I don’t usually nap but today I slept for a half hour. I take a picture of every bed I sleep in, and then at the end of the winter I publish all the pictures on my blog so my fans can get an idea of what it’s like to travel 200+ days per year. (Check out my Bed Blog 2018-2019 here.)

A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan

Before my afternoon training session I do some work for my job as the chair of the IBU athletes’ committee. I am always thinking about how I can help improve things for athletes. This week I am summarizing feedback from a spring survey, doing a few phone meetings, and preparing for next weekend’s Executive Board meeting in Munich, which I will attend in person. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed trying to be the best athlete and also the best athlete representative, but most of the time I find the work interesting and fulfilling. And I spend so much time training my body that it is a good balance to use my brain as well sometimes!

A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan

[There is always work to be done!]

Then it’s time for some core strength. Today we did core in Susan Dunklee’s backyard. She owns a house in Craftsbury with 40 blueberry bushes full of ripe berries, for a nice prize after finishing the workout.

A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan
A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan

Before dinner we do some shooting together. Today we worked on a small detail of how to load the spare round for relays. How do you do it? How fast can you do it? What is the fastest and most accurate way? We show each other our different techniques and use a stopwatch to find the fastest way. These small details can make the difference for the relay team.

Finally the long training day is over and it is time for a BBQ at the lake. On our menu is grilled burgers, fresh salads, and many different desserts, including the famous American “s’more” which is a marshmallow roasted on a campfire, sandwiched between sweet crackers called Graham crackers, and a chunk of chocolate. This BBQ was not only with our biathlon team but also the whole Green Racing Project ski team. That’s a lot of hungry athletes!

A Day in the Life of… Clare Egan

Being an athlete is hard work, but it is also a privilege to have a strong, healthy body and it’s a gift to be able to use it.

Top