Yulia Stupak: There are girls on World Cup circuit who always hit you poles, always aggressive

We continued publish our notes from a recent interview with Yulia Stupak. For ” ease of digestion “, her thoughts & tales were grouped thematically (in reality one gets to hear Ms.Stupak’s opinion on everything at once – and then back again. Absolutely charming if you are present but quite impossible to convey verbatim)

” I am walking on a knife’s edge – exploring my maximum in each and every training cycle yet trying not to overdo it. That’s how you grow and find new strength. Functional readiness, technique – everything. The latter one is constantly evolving – Markus ( Cramer) works a lot with me to better my style – even if microscopically, little by little.

In the Olympic season the stakes are much, much higher than in any other one. Lots of athletes go into sort of panic mode in mid-spring already: “We have to start training earlier! We have to increase the training
load! “etc. etc. Cant say I’m totally immune to that feeling either: when I arrived to the first training camp of the season and looked at the plan, I was like “Why so little?! I can do more and I want to do more!” To which Markus camply replied “ No need to worry, Yulia, it shall be more than enough for you, you’ll see ”

“…It takes me 24 hours on average to get back from any World Cup location to home in Yekaterinburg, Russia. Unlike many , yet I actually don’t feel physical consequences of that all that much – you learn to drink more than usual/ eat less, put on compression socks etc. The bigger problem for me is less than optimally prepared training ski tracks at home. In that aspect the Norwegian girls win outright – they step outside and right onto well groomed tracks…”

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“…Mass start is a special race. There are girls on the World Cup circuit who always “sit”on the tips of your skis, always hit you poles, always stay aggressive . And you, in turn, always wonder: is it personal towards me or is that their standard mode of behaviour? I am the opposite – I’d always give them way at the beginning or in the middle of the race. Let’s see who will be the strongest at the finish line!

Do I understand what moves Johaug to train and race so hard, the way she does ? Yes and no. She’s fantastic when it comes to her motivation, the motivation to be absolute best in the world, year after year. I think the disqualification added to her motivation, made her will even stronger…”


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