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|Meg Olenick competing in Winter X Slopestyle.|
After suffering an ACL injury last March, this summer has been unusual for Winter X Slopestyle skier Meg Olenick. Instead of coaching at Momentum in Whistler, she's been at home in Colorado. Finishing her degree in English literature at the University of Colorado brought on another change: No more juggling classes with skiing. We talked to Olenick on her last day of a beach vacation in Cape Cod, Mass., to check up on her rehab, life as a graduate, and what she's doing to get ready for this winter.
This was your third ACL injury and surgery. Does it get any easier?
No, it really doesn't. I did it when I was 16 and when I was 18, so I kind of forgot about it and it just brings back so many memories. All your friends are out traveling, and you're seeing all the videos and everyone out doing what you want to do -- and you're cooped up on the couch.
When can you ski again?
My physical therapist told me the end of November at the earliest, but when I recently met with her at the three-month mark, I was way ahead of where I needed to be. It looks like as soon as the snow starts to fall I'll be fine to go out there and ski groomers for a while before I get back into jumping. I've kind of written off the first couple contests of the season so I don't put pressure on myself to get back into it really fast. It's kind of nice to have thinking time in the process instead of just go, go, go.
You just graduated from college. Congratulations. How does that feel?
It's such a nice feeling at the end of August not to be rushing to go back to school, just feeling like, "Oh, I can do what I want this fall." I'm headed to the Center of Excellence in Park City to train. I worked all summer so that this fall I can just focus on getting strong and getting my head back to where it needs to be, so as soon as snow falls I can be there.
How is the addition of slopestyle to the Olympics affecting your plans?
I'm just focused on the rehab, and I don't want to get my hopes up for winter. It's been amazing motivation with my knee because I'm like, "Just go on a bike ride, it's going to be worth it. Go to the gym, it's going to be worth it." In my head I'm like "Olympics. Olympics." It's been a great motivator.
You're involved in a six-pack abs contest with Grete Eliassen and Jen Hudak. What brought that on?
Grete always is like, "I'm headed to Grete boot camp." She's always talking about working out. I said something about doing abs, and it was kind of ongoing and she said, "Want to make a contest out of it?" This was all over Twitter, and Jen was like, I'm in. So for the first seven or eight weeks Jen and I were posting pictures every Thursday. It was pretty funny, the reactions we got. Then we slowly stopped doing it, but people still randomly bring it up. It's just for bragging rights.
You, Grete, and Keri Herman also have the Cold As Ice TV project. Any big plans for this winter?
We tried to put out some videos this summer -- I actually got some good hurricane footage from being back east, so hopefully we'll put that up and keep putting out videos. Some of them get a lot of hits, some of them don't. We talked about trying to get a couple more filmers in there so we're not filming each other and we can all ski. We're definitely going to keep it going and hopefully it will take off.