SNOWMASS VILLAGE, Colo. (AP) — Since the Olympics, Bode Miller has been in perpetual chill mode.
Hanging out with his young daughter, soaking up the sun in San Diego and showing up for an occasional commitment have become about the extent of his activities in the wake of winning three medals at the Vancouver Games.
Miller is fully enjoying “just relaxin’.”
That’s why Miller is in no big hurry to make any huge decisions concerning his future.
Ask him about what lies ahead and he’ll just grin.
“No rush on that,” Miller said Wednesday as he took part in a winter sports clinic for disabled veterans in Snowmass.
None at all?
“Nope,” he said.
Miller is still mulling over myriad factors that will play a role in his decision, including whether his daughter can venture over to Europe while he’s competing on the World Cup circuit.
“That’s just the tip of the iceberg,” he said. “There’s just a ton of things (to consider).”
His tentative timetable has him reaching a decision before the U.S. Ski Team’s preseason camp in August.
As to which way he may be leaning, he refuses to tip his hand.
“If I was leaning, I would make the decision,” Miller told The Associated Press. “It’s a matter of I wait until I feel like I have good information and then I’ll make a decision.”
He’s been in this position before.
Miller, a two-time World Cup overall champion, skipped summer training last year while he debated retirement, eventually electing to make a full-fledged return and rejoin the U.S. team after competing independently for two seasons.
It turned out to be a wise choice as he captured the gold medal in the super-combined at the Vancouver Olympics, along with earning silver in the super-G and bronze in the downhill.
Miller won his way, too — his gambler’s mentality rewarding him richly in Whistler. He has never made apologies for his go-for-broke style, willing to take risks most skiers wouldn’t even contemplate.
More often than not, it’s worked out quite well for him. He’s won 32 World Cup races in his career.
For now, Miller’s intentions are to keep it in relax mode.
However, later this spring, his plan is to test out skis for his sponsor, Head.
Just don’t read too much into his involvement.
“I like the company and I’m real tight with all the guys,” explained Miller, who also won two silver medals at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. “I want to help them develop their skis anyway.”
As for getting into shape, he insists it won’t take him long, even if he waits until the end of summer to decide.
“I always stay in shape, so I’m not really that worried about that,” Miller said. “If I make that decision, then I feel like I’m prepared.”
Miller was on the mountain Wednesday, joining a group of disabled veterans for a day on the snow. He posed for pictures, shook hands and then clicked into a pair of borrowed skis after forgetting to bring his along.
He chatted with veterans whose injuries ranged from amputations to blindness, offering tips to some of the skiers zooming along next to him and words of encouragement to others.
Miller spends quite a bit of time working with adaptive skiers, his foundation in New Hampshire assisting them as well.
“A lot of these guys have overcome adversity in ways that none of us can understand,” said Miller, who will be hosting a ski event on April 3 to benefit his Turtle Ridge Foundation. “When you get to ride up the lift with them and talk to them, hear their story and get to see how they’ve adapted, the fact that they, in some cases, enjoy the stuff we take for granted much more — those are all good things to be reminded of. These guys have some unbelievable stories to tell.”