• Maddie Phaneuf

Closing out the season

And just like that, the 2017/18 biathlon season is officially over. I hate to sound like a downer, but this was definitely the worst season of my career. I struggled with constant sickness which resulted in lower training hours. I saw the aftermath of this during the race season, where I simply just wasn't racing to my full potential. Yes, I made the Olympic Team, but just barely. I found myself struggling with depression and motivation since the beginning of the training season, up until now. Honestly, I'd love to just erase this season out of my memory. But it's good to look back and see where things went wrong, and where I can make that's what I'm going to do.

People keep asking me if I'm going to try for the 2022 Winter Olympics, and the answer is "I don't know!". I do know that I'm sticking with biathlon for another year, and will continue to do it as long as I'm happy and enjoy racing and training. In order to do that, I need to make some significant changes.

First things first, I'm getting my health checked out by a specialist. I have obviously been going to doctors, but clearly there is some underlying issues that are causing me to constantly get sinus infections, strep throat, and other forms of sickness. I'll be seeing an Ear, Nose, Throat specialist this Wednesday and can't wait to see what they find. At this point, I'll really do anything to get my health back to normal. I'm expecting to have to go under some sort of surgerty for either my tonsils or my nose/sinus area...but I'll be sure to keep you all posted once they find out what's wrong with me.

Secondly, I'm officially moving to Boulder, Colorado starting mid/late June! I'm excited to live somewhere new with a group of fun people that I love. I'll be renting my first place EVER, and I'm so excited to cook my own food, have a backyard, be a part of a community, and live a more balanced life. I think this is the biggest step towards happiness for me, and I'm going to try my hardest to make this move work with my biathlon career.

My biggest weakness in biathlon right now is my ski speed, so my goal for this summer is to work on my balance, strength program, and getting faster on my skis! My shooting is pretty solid, so I'm not as worried about that as I am with my physical fitness. Obviously I'll still do dryfire drills and shooting drills, but my main focus will be ski speed and strength.

I'm excited for this new journey, and can't wait to see what this upcoming 2018/19 season brings! I also have a few new sponsors to add to my team. This includes Aurora Naturally's Warm Skin - which is an all weather guard moisturizing cream that I've been using for the past 15 years! I will also be working with Honey Stinger this coming season - a delicious honey-based energy company that will help me fuel my workouts and recovery sessions! If you're reading this and would like to join my team, please contact me.

Thank you all for your support, kind words, and love! See you in May!

Currently listening to: Friction by Kai Straw

- MP