10/30/2013 18:28 ● Published by Grant Johnson
Photo courtesy 2011 U.S. Ski Team
Steamboat Springs, CO - Todd is arguably the most successful Nordic Combined athlete in the sport’s history. He has competed in every Winter Olympic Games since 1994. A qualification for Sochi would make him the first American winter sport athlete to attend six Olympics.
Q. What’s your
favorite career moment so far?
A. How can I choose?! I'd have to say that some of the greatest moments in my career are those of my teammates. Hoisting Johnny Spillane on my shoulders right after he crossed the line and became world champion at the 2003 World Championships in Italy is a moment I will never forget. To stand proudly on the podium as a team in Vancouver, receiving our medals and watching our American flag raised while seeing familiar faces in the crowd was an overwhelming feeling that this medal was as much theirs as it was my own. I was humbled with the honor of representing the United States and being named to an Olympic team.
Q. What does a
typical day of training look like for you?
A. It depends on the time of year. We are one of few two-discipline sports at the Olympics. So we have strength, power, quickness and agility for ski jumping, and long distance endurance for our cross-country skiing. But, it typically goes like this: Monday through Saturday, endurance in the morning, Monday, Wednesday, Friday afternoons in the gym. Work in stretching, psychology, meditation. Our biggest month of endurance is up to 75 hours. Anyone up for a run?
Q. How do you like
to celebrate a victory?
A. With my hands over my head, smile on my face and a high-five for my crew and teammates, because they got me there!
Q. What’s your
favorite hangout in Steamboat?
A. In 24 inches of champagne powder. After my legs have gotten a workout, I love to kick them up at any one of the great restaurants in town.
Q. If you had a
superpower, what would it be?
A. Teleport. It would eliminate my 20+ hour trips to Europe.
Q. Who is your
favorite musical artist or band?
A. I listen to pretty much anything. It's all about who you're with and what mindset you are in.
Q. Who is your
favorite fictional character?
A. I love the adventures of “The Cat in The Hat.” What do you think about that!
Q. What drew you
to your sport?
A. Being on skis and going fast, I loved the feeling of flying. It's 10 seconds of time in which everything disappears – I’m only concentrating on what I need to do to jump successfully. That, in itself, is addicting.
Q. What was your
favorite subject in school?
A. I loved anatomy and physiology. I had a great teacher and I think that's what made the difference.
Q. What’s the
hardest thing about being a professional athlete?
A. Being put on a pedestal and the expectations of the general public. I train hard to compete at my best, but sometimes I fail.