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Snowboard Star Jeremy Jones Aims to Protect Our Winters

Jeremy Jones wants to see snow on the world's mountains for generations to come. (Photo courtesy of Protect Our Winters)

Written by Alyssa Belanger, editorial intern

Jeremy Jones has conquered the slopes as a snowboarding superstar, and now he's set his sights on the environment. He created Protect Our Winters (POW), an organization bringing awareness to climate change issues that impact a wide variety of industries that rely on the cooler climates of mountainous communities—from snowboarding to wineries like Alamos Wines, which he also supports. In his new movie Further, set to release next year, Jeremy and his team takes viewers along as he explores some of the world’s most beautiful and extreme terrain in the Arctic Circle, Japan, the High Sierra and the Pickett Range. Jeremy's body and mind were forced to face some of nature’s most unimaginable tests during this journey. Jeremy gave me the scoop on POW, his film and his fitness secrets.

Why did you start Protect Our Winters? I started POW in 2007 after seeing a change in the climate. I have traveled the world and spent my life in the mountains, so when I started seeing a change I felt like as someone in the heart of the snowboarding industry I needed to do something. I felt that the whole industry needed to come together and rally around the issue.

When did you start training for your excursions in your movie Further? It’s funny, I have been snowboarding for 25 years and it has been an ongoing progression with snowboarding and fitness. Fitness is a lifestyle that you choose, and hopefully, you’re always building and evolving as both an athlete and human being.

Outside of boarding and hiking, what else do you do to exercise? I try to find stuff that I am excited about so that it doesn’t feel like a workout. In the summer, I enjoy things like rock climbing, mountain biking, stand-up paddleboarding or even just using my town bike to run errands.

How do you stay fit when you’re busy traveling? It gets hard to work out when I am traveling, so I have a little hotel room routine where I’ll choose several moves and take a short period of time to do high-intensity, core-focused exercises. I’m all about how I can get the most out of small amount of time, so when I come to cities I marvel at the huge staircases. I’m like, "there’s a place where I can get a great workout in a really short period of time!”

You’ve pushed your body and mind to the max in some of the most extreme conditions. How do you keep yourself motivated to keep going? So much of it is mental. I look to guys like these ultramarathon runners, who are literally on their feet for 40 hour stretches and are coming home with feet so swollen that they have to cut their shoes off. The human body can always move forward. We’ll be in situations where we haven’t eaten in five to 10 hours and we’re tired, but during those times I think of the people like those runners and just remind myself to slow down and go at my own pace.

What advice can you offer someone who is new to snowboarding? The first day will be hard, but after that it is exciting because every run and every day they will be progressing. My advice is to get out there, enjoy it and don’t get in over your head. Don’t feel like there is a rush to go out and conquer the hardest mountain right away, just enjoy each part of the experience.

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