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New mom is a winner

Jeff Caspersen
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
XTERRA Winter Worlds
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SNOWBASIN, Utah ” Finding time to train isn’t as easy as it used to be for Glenwood Springs resident Sari Anderson.

Instead of allowing the strains of raising an infant cut into her training time, the 29-year-old professional adventure racer simply adapts. Depending on what she’s practicing, Anderson is often found dragging her 8-month-old girl along during training sessions.

Literally.



“I’ve definitely been working hard getting back into shape,” Anderson said. “It’s a lot harder to find time to get out and train. It’s a lot of 5 a.m. or 7 p.m. at night stuff. It’s a lot of pushing the stroller or towing a trailer skiing.”

Whatever she’s been doing to get back in competitive shape since giving birth on June 30, 2007, is working. Her Saturday triumph at the XTERRA Winter World Championships at Utah’s Snowbasin Resort proved just that.



Anderson was the first female across the finish line, making up more than two minutes in the final stage to vault from third to first and clock a winning time of 2 hours, 29 minutes and 47.7 seconds.

Anderson and her fellow XTERRA competitors crammed mountain biking, snowshoeing, running and ski mountaineering stages into that grueling two and a half hours of racing. And it all happened at a 6,000-foot elevation in the face of snow flurries.

“It was pretty snow,” Anderson said. “Friday when we got there, we were checking out the course and it was gorgeous and sunny and 45 degrees. Saturday morning, we woke up and there were a few inches of snow and much colder. It made for an especially interesting mountain bike ride through fresh snow.”

The win rated as one of Anderson’s personal favorites. And this from a woman who’s more than accustomed to winning as part of Team Nike’s elite adventure racing team.

“I’ve done nothing quite like this, against this type of competition,” she said by phone Sunday on her way back from Utah with her husband, Ian, and daughter, Juniper. “It’s probably my personal-best accomplishment.”

An example of the competition she bested is eight-time U.S. National Cross County Skiing champ and 2006 Winter Olympian Rebecca Dussault, who herself has 13-month-old and 6-year-old children.

“There were definitely some great racers,” Anderson said. “Rebecca Dussault, who came in second, is an Olympic Nordic skier, a national champ. Jenny Tobin is a top-five XTERRA racer. Lisa Isom is as well. Keri Nelson is an incredible runner, a super great athlete, from Grand Junction. There were definitely some good women there.”

Anderson timed in nearly two minutes ahead of Dussault and more than 15 minutes ahead of Isom.

The life of a pro adventure racer is never idle, and Anderson will tackle America’s Uphill ski race, which features a vertical climb of 3,267 feet, in Aspen on Saturday. And while the winter races may tail off, her adventure race season kicks off April 5 in Moab.

That means plenty of training time for Anderson and little Juniper, who is already well exposed to the racing and training world.

Does that mean she’ll follow in her mom’s footsteps one day? Perhaps, or perhaps not.

“I hope she has something,” Anderson said. “She’ll enjoy something I know nothing about probably, but she loves being outside. She’s happy going out while I train.”


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