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Showing posts from June, 2014

Spectating

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Some of the fastest mountain bikers in the world descended upon Colorado Springs and the punchy trails of Pulpit Rock today. While I wanted to be out there, mixing it up with Olympic medalists  and world champions (yeah right - would have been happy to finish on same lap!) it was not in the cards. I was not as recovered from 24 Hours in the Enchanted Forest as I would have liked - and definitely not ready to be lining up with world class athletes. So it was a day to play spectator. We watched most of the women's race and all of the men's race. Under cloudless skies, the temperature was hot and the sun brutal. From what I saw of the course, it was a hard power course with some very steep climbs, loose descents and tight corners. It looked hard and I was happy I wasn't racing! I was having fun taking photos and Nick was enjoying heckling. It's awesome to see this caliber of racing in Colorado Springs. 

After the women's race, it was time to watch the men. We grabbed a…

Moving on

Well, the bruises are faded and the deep seated fatigue is resolving. I'm finally feeling like I've caught up on my sleep and the four pounds I'd lost have miraculously reappeared. (I was hoping on that one... Would have been nice to have kept those pounds off.) The jersey is hanging on my wall and the rush of congratulations has subsided. Time to get back to reality. I'm still in recovery - and plan for another week of easy stuff at least. I want to make sure I'm really ready when to time comes to ramp it again. And I've got a few things to address to ensure success at the next great adventure. I leaned a lot over the 22 hours of pedaling and it's time to apply them.

It wasn't my legs that limited me in the final laps of the race. I was tired sure and not showing the spunk of the morning. But my legs were decent. It was my arms that really held me back. I was hurting so badly in my biceps and triceps that I could hardly maneuver the bike through the roc…

Dust in the wind - 2014 24 Hours in the Enchanted Forest

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(This is long - very long... Grab a snack and a beverage before diving in....)

All of the same fears and questions dogged my mind in the days before the race. I hadn't really finished a true 24 solo effort yet because of the rain delay last year. Every time I thought about last year, the nerves and worry would rear up, casting doubt on my abilities and my goals. I knew I'd done the work - this race had been the sole focus of my training since 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo. I trusted the plan and knew Nick would keep me moving and keep me safe. But the demons were already lurking. So many times in the past I've reached for a goal, trained and poured my heart and soul into one last chance. And so many times I've come up empty handed. It was a good thing we were far away from everyone else with with awesome Back of the Pack crew. It's nearly impossible to be nervous and stressed out around them. Had we been closer, with all the pre-race staring, it would have been hard fo…

Sinking in

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Sometimes, when you chase a goal for years, it doesn't seem like reality when you finally reach it. From crewing for Nick at his solo singlespeed race the first year 24 hour nationals was in Palmer Park (our home course!) to placing second against Sonya and Jonathon the following year in the co-ed duo class to last year's rained out stage race, it seemed like we were always so close but so far away. Even throughout most of the race this year, actually reaching my goal just dangled in front of me. And then - suddenly it was there - within reach. All I had to do was ride my bike and it would become reality. The top step of the podium - a stars and stripes national championship jersey.

On the drive out of the venue, I sent a message to Coach Adam "mission accomplished - more details later." Despite having the jersey in my lap, I still didn't quite believe what I'd accomplished. So I took a picture and posted it for the world to see. And my digital world proceed …

24 Hours - last chance

Wow. I don't think it has sunk in yet. When I learned that the 24 Hours in the Enchanted Forest would be the final USA Cycling National Championships, I focused the entire first half of the year preparing. Coach Adam planned the training out - it was my job execute and physically get ready for 24 hours on my bike. Nick and I organized the race plan and he was also my awesome crew - managing every detail so all I had to do was ride my bike. There were plenty of hiccups along the way - from a tweaked knee before the Growler, a nasty cold a week ago and a perennially irritated Achilles' tendon (pick a side - both were taking turns being cranky) - but everything seemed to be falling into place.

We got to Gallup Wednesday morning and found a great pit site - away from the noise and dust of the venue, but right on course. With the Back of the Pack crew also showing up with six other soloists, having a good location was important. We also go to hang out with that fun gang all weekend…