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Athlete Profile: Jan Erik Naess

Born1998
HometownMississauga, ON
Currently LivingCalgary, AB
ClubFWOC
OccupationSOGO junior coach and studying Geomatics Engineering
Instagram@janerikna
BlogBlog

How did you first get involved in orienteering? 
Orienteering has been in our family for two generations now. I was dragged out to it until I finally learned to love it after attending a Sasse Peepre camp in 2014. Since then it has taken over and driven me forward in life!

If you had one tip for young orienteers, what would it be?
Go to the biggest races you can get to. You will start to see how incredible people can become at orienteering and after you get to know them a bit you will realize that you too can become just as good.

What would a typical week of training look like for you (at a part of the season of your choosing)?
Race season is during the summer and is sporadically constructed around miniature peaks for races. I have a base training for the rest of the months and during that time I run three times a week with my cross country team, on Saturdays I am either coaching or training orienteering and every couple of weeks have a Cross Country or Track race to run!

How do you normally prepare for an important race? 
For the big races, preparation starts as soon as I decide I will race it. I get myself out into relevant terrain and, much like how your body can learn soccer moves, I try to have my body learn to run through that terrain. I start doing route analysis and learn the best ways to run which can vary throughout a race depending on my mental and physical fatigue. And then everything is pieced together with mental prep, before I go to the month before my race I visualize a specific piece of the race. Once the race comes around I let myself go and enjoy it.

What is your big life orienteering goal?
I have two goals, for myself, I dream of setting national records in each and every orienteering discipline. I want to do this with a team, bringing each other along in a persevering quest for perfection. Secondly, I would like to enable others to have wonderful life experiences similar to those that orienteering gave me. Therefore, I would like to continue doing more and more coaching of aspiring juniors, helping them reach their goals and find direction in what they love.


Jan Erik is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Graeme Rennie

Born1991
HometownNorth Vancouver, BC
Currently LivingVancouver, BC
ClubGVOC
OccupationComputer Engineer
Training LogAttackpoint

How did you first get involved in orienteering? 
As a kid with my family.

If you had one tip for young orienteers, what would it be?
Stay positive. Every great orienteerer has their own long list of embarrassing mistakes and botched races.

What would a typical week of training look like for you (at a part of the season of your choosing)?
1 WET Orienteering Training, 2 track interval sessions, 1 gym strength session, 2 regular runs and 1 long run

How do you normally prepare for an important race? 
Relax! Eat lots, sleep well.

What is your big life orienteering goal?
Run in as many big events and cool countries as possible.


Graeme is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Michael Svoboda

Born1999
HometownCalgary, AB
Currently LivingCalgary, AB
Club FWOC
OccupationStudent
Training LogAttackpoint

If you had one tip for young orienteers, what would it be?
Start as early as possible, and join a track team. Do Orienteering for fun until you’re bored, then set some performance goals and strive towards them.

What would a typical week of training look like for you (at a part of the season of your choosing)?

Monday: Rest, 5km
Tuesday: 6x 1km intervals + AM jog (4:00 pace), 11km + 5
Wednesday 4min x 8 (4:30pace) MRU Sprintervals Recovery + AM jog, 12km + 5
Thursday: 5x 2km intervals + AM jog, 12km + 5
Friday: Long (17km@5:00pace) run, recovery 17.5km
Saturday: 30min (4:30pace) Orienteering Recovery + 3x Hill intervals, 12km
Sunday: 15min tempo – threshold pace + PM jog, 13km


Michael is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Adam Woods

Born1994
HometownBurnaby, BC
Currently LivingCoquitlam, BC
ClubGVOC
OccupationSoftware Developer
Training LogAttackpoint
Twitter@a_runwoodsrun

How did you first get involved in orienteering?
I was first introduced to orienteering when I was in grade school; My parents saw an orienteering event in the city’s activity guide and decided to try it out. I biked behind my father as he navigated – I have strong memories of taking a few “shortcuts” through the bush that definitely didn’t save us any time. Unfortunately, the person putting on these events stopped after 2 summers, and I didn’t discover the existence of the Greater Vancouver Orienteering Club until I was in Grade 10.

If you had one tip for a younger orienteer, what would it be?
The best way to maximize enjoyment while orienteering is to decide what you want to get out of each orienteering course. Some of the time the goal will be to learn, other times it will be to “have fun” and at big races your goal might be “to win”. The goal you have will determine the types of route choices you take + the type of experience you have. You can choose to take more inefficient routes because they are fun or because they will be better training. You get to decide what kind of experience you have when you’re out on a course!


Adam is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Pia Blake

Born1996
HometownWhitehorse, YT
Currently Living Lund, Sweden
ClubYOA
Lunds OK
OccupationStudent
Training LogAttackpoint

How did you first get involved in orienteering?
I was first introduced to orienteering by my parents and would often take my stuffed animals for strolls in the woods, preferring the map reading component to the running. As I got older, I realized that I needed to push myself physically as well as mentally and so began training with goals for the COCs, NACOs, and eventually JWOC and WOC in mind.

What is your big life orienteering goal?
I would like to remain active in orienteering and contributing to the sport for life. I have gotten to much out of coaches and parents in this orienteering community and would like to give forward to the next generation.


Pia is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Rachel May

Born1999
HometownSalmon Arm, BC
Currently Living Kelowna, BC
ClubSAGE
OccupationStudent
Training LogAttackpoint
Instagram@rachelhmay

How did you first get involved in orienteering?
I got involved in orienteering as young kid by being taken along with my parents to orienteering races.

If you had one tip for young orienteers, what would it be?
My tip for young orienteers would be to just have fun while orienteering.

What would a typical week of training look like for you (at a part of the season of your choosing)?
A typical week of training for me during the school year, would have a mix of running and going to the gym sessions along with maybe an on-map training session as allowable by my course load.

How do you normally prepare for an important race?
To prepare for an important race I make sure that I am well rested and that I do a good physical and mental warm-up before the race.

What is your big life orienteering goal?
My big life orienteering goal is to remain active and in the sport of orienteering for life.


Rachel is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Emma Sherwood

Born1997
HometownCalgary, AB
Currently LivingCalgary, AB
ClubFWOC
Occupation Student
Training LogAttackpoint
Instagram@emma_sherwood_02

If you had one tip for young orienteers, what would it be?
Take all the opportunities you can to get lots of different orienteering experience. This would include getting out on as many different maps in as many different types of terrain as possible, so you’re able to adapt to and have strategies for many different types of terrain. Also, try to get coached by many different people as some may have suggestions that work really well for you. Getting more experience in higher level competition can also be quite beneficial, and fun

How do you normally prepare for an important race?
There are several different preparation steps I do at different time intervals before a race. Long before the event, I plan my physical training so as to peak for the specific race. I also try to study any old maps of the area, and practice making courses and considering route choices on them. Closer to the race, I train on terrain similar to that of the race area. This is to get used to the terrain, the way it is mapped, and which navigation strategies are best for it.

The day before and the morning of the race, I make sure I get enough sleep, that I’m hydrated, and that I eat a good breakfast (for me this is normally cereal, water and two slices of toast). I have a normal warm-up routine before my race, involving dynamic stretching, running, and ideally a warm-up map: in addition to physical warm-up, I find mental/technical warm-up very important. Finally, on the way to the start I remind myself of the three brief things I’m planning on focusing on during my race. I would have already prepared these based on the training I did in similar terrain and my strengths and weaknesses at the time.


Emma is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Emma Waddington

Born1998
HometownHamilton, ON
Currently LivingHamilton, ON
ClubDontgetlost
Helsingin Suunnistajat
OccupationAdventure Running Kids Schools Instructor
Training LogAttackpoint
Twitter@_emmawaddington
Instagram@emma__waddington
BlogBlog
Personal SponsorsEndurance Tap
NVii Sport
DK Orthotic Solutions

How did you first get involved in orienteering?
When my family was living in Sweden in 2006, I was basically forced to start learning from my dad. I started doing some of the kid’s courses in the local club OK Linne. When we came back to Canada, my dad used to make me attend events when I was younger, but I didn’t really enjoy it too much since nobody there was my age. Then, Dontgetlost started our Adventure Running Kids program, and I started to really enjoy the sport since there were so many friends to train with! This then inspired me to join the national team and I’ve been on it ever since

What would a typical week of training look like for you (at a part of the season of your choosing)?
During the months prior to a large event (usually in the spring before summer racing, or during fall cross country season), my week consists of: 2 sessions of strength training a week, plus 1 session of core a week. In the racing months my lifting sessions are a bit lighter in weight but with more endurance focus, as opposed to heavy/shorter lifts in the winter base training months. These lifts are usually after a 30-45 minute recovery run (or cross-training) with strides. My week will also have 2-3 interval workouts a week. One will be more tempo-based usually with hills, another will be longer intervals with bigger rest, and a third with shorter intervals and little rest. On the weekend I will do a long run (or bike) of 80-100 minutes, and finally a rest day with lots of stretching.

If you had one tip for young orienteers, what would it be?
HAVE FUN!!!!

What is your big life orienteering goal?
If I can make it to another WUOC during my educational career, my goal is to medal in the sprint race!


Emma is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Graeme Farrand

Born2000
HometownHamilton, ON
Currently Living Waterloo, ON
ClubDontgetlost
OccupationStudent
Training LogAttackpoint
Instagram@instagramfarrand

How did you first get involved in orienteering? 
First started in Don’t Get Lost’s Adventure Running Kids program. I really enjoyed the orienteering it introduced me to and I progressively started to more of it and travelling for races. In 2016 I went to Swiss O Week with my family and ended up hanging out with that years Junior Team a bunch which got me interested in being more competitive and serious about orienteering.

How do you normally prepare for an important race?
In the preceding weeks or months to the race I will go over all the race details available as well as study the area on Google maps and any old maps I can find online. When it gets closer to the race I write the 2-3 process goals I want to focus on in the race.


Graeme is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.

Athlete Profile: Isak Fransson

Born2003
HometownHamilton, ON
Currently LivingHamilton, ON
ClubDontgetlost
OK Njudung
OccupationStudent
Training LogAttackpoint
Strava
Instagram@isak.fransson

How did you first get involved in orienteering?
My dad introduced me to orienteering at a young age because he is a big orienteer. He took me to a couple races and I really enjoyed it. Ever since we have been traveling to Sweden over the summer and I try to fit in as many races in as I can.

If you had one tip for young orienteers, what would it be?
Try and get as many orienteering controls as you can. That means going to as many trainings and races as possible. Do not forget to have fun!


Isak is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2020 High Performance Program.