Sunday, June 28, 2015

US Cup Finale in the 'Springs!

Iconic Pulpit Rock. Not the best picture, but man was it pretty out there!
Under a relentlessly hot sun, on the dry SoCal-esq trails of Pulpit Rock Park in Colorado Springs, we wrapped up the US Cup Series yesterday with one final HC level Cross Country race. 
Not racing against the fastest women in the US (and some from other parts of the world) for a few weeks, and having a head cold for three weeks/not doing much in the workout category took it's toll on my confidence, and I went into the race just hoping for a top 10 result. Maybe I'm just a low expectations kind of girl, but I would rather be pleasantly surprised than devastated by a race result. Somehow I was both those things at the same time yesterday.

The race started out surprisingly well with little start line nerves and a smooth start loop. We raced 5.5 laps of a course that resembled an infinity sign, which was a bit confusing for me, but kept me entertained with counting how many laps we had left during the race. On the first lap there were some near crashes as girls jockeyed for position, but when everything settled down I was sitting in 5th place in the chase behind Chloe and Erin (the two fastest Americans in the race) with Rose and Georgia right on my wheel. I surprised myself by keeping up on the reasonably technical descents on the first two laps, and felt really good climbing behind Chloe and Erin. We were able to drop Rose and Georgia a little near the middle of the race, so when the pace seemed too easy on the climbs I decided to do some work and came around my chase mates. Turns out there was a headwind on the front of the group (which explains the 'easy' pace) and I am also not as strong as the girls I was riding with. Unfortunately this led to me being dropped on the last lap, and not having the legs to hold off Georgia, who was able to put in an impressive effort on lap 4.5 to catch me. Georgia drafted off me for most of the last lap, and no matter how hard I tried I could not drop her on the climbs. I could hear her breathing pretty hard, but my legs were cramping/I was out of matches. Georgia came around me on the final descent and rode away from me before I could even react, taking the last podium spot. 

My first reaction to the race/my result of 6th place in an HC level field was to be ecstatic. I can't help being surprised that I am able to ride with these women who just a year ago were way beyond my ability level. I was pumped that all the training I have been doing for the last two months matched up so well with the specific features of the race (altitude and punchy, short climbs), and impressed with the brilliance of my coach. I was also a little shocked that I had kept up on the descents for the first half of the race, and even Georgia noticed my improved descending! 

As time passed though the disappointment set in. Why didn't I fight harder for 5th place? How did I come so close to that podium, but loose it on the LAST DESCENT?! Why couldn't I just be patient and draft during the race instead of going to the front and wasting what precious energy I had (maybe I could have used that effort to keep Georgia away on the last lap!)

When it comes down to it though, I know the best thing to do is to learn from this experience, and to be grateful for the result and clean race. I feel so honored to be racing neck and neck with Georgia, and to have been able to keep up with Erin and Chloe for most the race. I am also beyond grateful for the level of support Ridebiker Alliance has provided me at this (and all the others) race. To be able to pre-ride both my race bikes and choose the one that feels the fastest, to have Don washing my bikes and throwing an SRM on the Scalpel on Friday afternoon, to be able to focus all my energy on racing and recovering, it's like living the dream I've had for the last two years. And all this support plus the disappointment of coming so close to the podium is the greatest motivation to train harder and race smarter next time. 

I don't think racing is in the cards for the next two weekends (until Nationals) so for now I just want to express my gratitude to some of the outstanding people who made my 7th overall US CUP standing possible. Thanks to CTS for providing me with the most kick ass coach. Matt really is brilliant, so much so that I was thinking about how perfectly he prepared me physically while I was racing! Thanks to Kappius Components for hooking me up with super light, super wide rims. I may have fought Brendan on the concept of getting on wider rims, but he was right times 100. These wheels are the main reason my descending has improved so much. Thanks Sugio Apparel for the incredibly cute new kits. I've done a few races in the new kit now, and I am so stoked to wear it every time! And thanks to Adam, Don and Daimo for all your work this weekend washing bikes, handing out water bottles, providing us with a shady place to sit and a wet rag at the finish line. You guys work so freaking hard, for far more hours than us, and you never ask for any credit at all. This is the dream, and it wouldn't be possible without you three. And obviously I am over the moon grateful for the dream bikes I get to race on. Both the Scalpel and Fsi are the kind of bikes I used to salivate over, and now I get to race them. It's seriously a fairy tale :)

One last thought for the day... RIP Alex Meows.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Eating, Disorders, and Being Frugal

Imma try to be serious about something for once. We'll see how it goes, and then maybe never do it again... I don't know, we'll see.

Let's be honest, I don't really know what I'm doing here, racing bikes full time that is. Some of it is easy, like following a training plan. Coach says go hard, I go hard. Coach says do core, I do core. I also have an awesome support network around me through Ridebiker and team ShoAir, as well as through my friends and family, but a lot of the time I make decisions that aren't so good because you can't have someone telling you what to do 100% of the time. Mostly these bad decisions are in the nutrition department. It feels a little sad to say that at 29 years old I am still struggling with how to feed myself appropriately, and I know in my brain lots of good facts about what to eat and when, but for some reason it's really hard to put that knowledge into practice.

This problem is at it's worst when I'm on my bike. Yesterday I rode for 3 hours (was only supposed to be out there for 2, but I get lost a lot) with just one bottle of water! Seriously, I have no schedule, nowhere I need to be at a certain time, and yet I couldn't take the time to throw drink mix in said bottle, or some back up food in my pockets? What is wrong with me?! I am very well aware of how much I should be eating and drinking on the bike, especially when the ride involves intervals, but I'm not smart enough to follow through! I have the same problem during races. I know drinking as much as possible will make the race less painful, and will help me perform, and I go into EVERY race with the goal of drinking as much as possible, but 1.5 bottles is pretty much the max I have even managed to drink in an XC race.

I also have major nutritional issues off the bike. For example, after the XC race in Missoula, a time when I knew the right thing to do would be to eat a well balanced meal with some protein, I goofed off for 45 minutes cooling down, chatting with friends, stood on a podium, etc, and then drank a bottle of recovery mix and ate 1/3 of a turkey sandwich. That was it, that was my dinner. Then on Sunday, because I couldn't find an open grocery store before leaving town I gnawed on a loaf of bread all day, like that was all I ate for breakfast and lunch. Yeah some of this stems from being extremely frugal, to a fault, because of the trauma of surviving college with zero dollars for food, but now that my job is to perform on the bike, shit needs to change. I can't keep making these horrible decisions.

The problem isn't just stupidity and being frugal. Add to those a pretty serious fear of gaining weight (the disorder part) and you have a great recipe for terrible nutritional choices. It's no secret that being very light can mean being really fast, but I know there is a point when not eating, or not eating the right things is harmful. And I've gotten a lot of grief from friends lately about what healthy looks like/ means.

For now I am trying to use the energy I once spent planning lessons and grading papers to plan my day around solid eating, riding and recovery. If anyone has advice on how to make it easier, to eat the right stuff at the right time, fire away! It's bizarre that I need to put so much time and energy into fueling my body properly, but hey, maybe one day it will be second nature!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

I Think I'm Falling in Love

Before it was just infatuation. It was all about looks and that new relationship feeling that gives you butterflies in your gut. I was smitten, and it was exciting, and we didn't really know each other at all. But it's become something much more serious in the past 4 weeks. We have been together a lot lately, and I feel like we finally know each other, we take care of each other, and my feelings are deeper than before. I think I'm falling in love... with my race Scalpel (and super wide Kappius rims)!
Who wouldn't get the feelings from riding that bike? Isn't she the prettiest?
We were together in Vail a few weeks ago, and have been attached at the hip since Missoula. Race Scalpel is the most beautiful, capable bike I have ever ridden (how do bikes keep getting better?!). It doesn't matter where we go, riding her is like a dream, and I get the giddy/sigh with pleasure feelings that cause me to hoot and holler even when we are in the wilderness all alone.

Here is the rundown of our adventures of late.

After the Missoula XCT I packed the rental car with Race Scalpel and headed to Sun Valley Idaho. On the way we gnawed on a loaf of Le Petit Outre bread and stopped at Fisher Creek trail for a nice recovery ride.
Wildflowers everywhere! Plus lush green grass and beautiful aspens. Then some burned trees...
 This little loop has some nice gradual climbs and screaming fast, flowy smooth descents. My heart was singing at the end of the ride. It's hard for me to not over-do on Race Scalpel, and the ride was over way too soon!
The view at the very end of the loop. I was kinda freaking out about the pretty scenery too. I wanted to take ALL the pictures!
Getting quite cozy with my love...

Then Race Scalpel slept together for the first time, in the back of the rental car parked in the woods just outside of Sun Valley. It was a bit cramped, but not sleeping at all Saturday night made it easy to fall asleep with a pedal in my ribs. I was pretty nervous about the bear situation (there was food in the car... remember that loaf of bread?) but apparently only California bears tear car doors off to get to the food inside.

The next morning called for a Bowl of Soul from Java on 4th (in honor of Darin Maxwell) and more pastries... I swore I would eat a real breakfast... but those blueberry muffins were calling my name! Then we had an epic day of riding the 2014 Marathon XC Nationals course (sorta). We got lost many times, suffered it out on an unnecessary, ridiculously steep fire road climb, and had some indecisive moments, but Race Scalpel and I had a blast together. This bike climbs like a hardtail, but descends so capably. It was another making happy noises while riding kind of day.
There was a lot of smiling and giggling going on... 
My cell phone camera doesn't do this place justice... you'll just have to go there and ride to find out how incredibly pretty it is!
We go everywhere together... who wouldn't want to spend the afternoon at the river with the love of their life? 
After the ride and a quick swim in the super cold river, we piled back into the car and drove to Salt Lake. Race Scalpel is the best travel buddy :)

We did some real work today, not just goofing off, but after the painful stuff we made some bad decisions that involved a hike-a-bike both Carl and Darrin would be proud of, and more mind blowing scenery. 
There was a lot of this face. And a lot of allergies, so snot, lots of snot. 

And that has been our life over the past few days. I'm not really sure what day of the week it is right now, but when you're in love, details like that don't really matter. What matters is that Race Scalpel and I will ride together again tomorrow... I cannot wait!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Missoula Pro XCT #3 For Third!

I've been called a few different things during mountain bike races, including a 'school teacher', 'motorboat', and this weekend 'the dark horse'. I wasn't really sure what to think about this most recent label when I came through the finish area on each of the 5 laps we raced on the ski slopes of Marshall Mountain in Missoula Montana. Does it mean I am tan? Strong as a horse? Is it a reference to some obscure movie or something? Whatever it means, racing in Missoula continues to be one of my all time favorite things ever!

I think this race recap needs to start with my pre-race calorie consumption. If I could pre-game every XC race with a perfectly flaky, soft in the center Le Petit Oture Croissant, I think I might podium every time! Butter and caffeine 3 hours before go time was the best idea ever :)

The Missoula XCT is arguably the best race in the series, because it takes place in the most beautiful place, on incredibly fun trails, and they give you ANTLERS if you finish in the top three. Earlier this week I was told by a few SoCal residents that I couldn't come home unless I brought antlers, so I was fully prepared to go buy a gun and do some hunting after the race, you know, so I wouldn't come home empty handed :) Fortunately, that isn't necessary, because I snagged some the (maybe) easier way, by landing a podium spot!

I still wasn't sure what to expect out of my body at the start line of this race because my lungs were still suffering the consequences of that awful cold. When we hit the line though, it was just a matter of focusing on the task at hand, and somehow near the top of the long twisty ski run climb on the first lap, I was sitting behind Leslie Patterson (who was in the lead!). I snuck around her at the top, railed the super fun equally twisty descent, and came into the feed zone/finish area first for lap 1. This freaked me out. I am not the kind of girl who leads races! Did I go out too hard on lap 1? Was I going to blow up later? I sat up a bit and let Leslie catch me, and then rode with her for a second lap. 

Eventually Leslie's climbing pace was a little too extreme for me (I had more feelings of 'I am definitely going to drop out of this race, I don't feel so good, I am still sick!) so I fell back a bit after lap 2 to ride with Rose Grant, who did a much better job of pacing me for the remaining three laps. Rose out-descended me on the final lap, thus putting me across the line in 3rd, the last spot to earn antlers! I guess I have a problem with going out too hard, and also thinking I want to drop out of every race because that has been the theme of the past 3 races, but maybe it's just that I can't tell the difference between 'your going really fast' pain and 'I hate my life why do I suck so much' pain. Despite the agony, I couldn't be happier with the results of the Missoula XCT. Listening to coach and not overdoing it while I was sick paid off, and now I'm super pumped to race in CO Springs in a week!
A rack AND a cowboy hat?! Is it my birthday!?
Post race I made some bad decisions, and had to quickly figure out transportation plans for the remainder of the week without internet, but the evening ended with Cardamom ice cream, so you know it was a good day!

Now I'm road tripping the crap out of the Northwest, solo, sleeping in cars, riding bikes, and living the life! See everyone in CO in a week!!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

I Heart Montana

One of the best parts of racing bikes, besides the agony and suffering of course, is going to fun places, like Missoula MT! This is my third year in a row doing the Missoula XCT, and I love this town just as much as the first time I came here. There are bakeries on every corner, big trees and pretty mountains everywhere, and the course is one of my favorite places to race bikes.

This year I am flying solo (no hubs to hang out with during the weekend), but I do have a rad team and support for race day, so that's a huge plus!

The only hard part about this race is that it doesn't happen until 4:30pm, so until then I am supposed to stay off my feet (which is harder than it sounds, especially when the number one thing I want to do is explore new single track near the house I'm staying at, and eat pastries).

So far this weekend has included:

TWO stops for Sando's at Great Harvest Bread Company where they give you free samples of bread as big as my hand :)
Apple crunch bread with honey, still warm from the oven :)
Bernice's Bakery for an epic reading/muffin eating sech yesterday morning.

A pre-ride of the dry but still fun course yesterday afternoon. I did not hit the A-line drop because there was a boy on a stretcher just after it being assisted by paramedics... No thanks! Also, the Kappius wheels Brendan guilt up for me just before leaving CA are a lifesaver in the loose steep stuff. I'm so excited to shred on them tonight!
The course winds up the ski slope through the big trees, and then back down, it's AMAZING!
An hour of struggling to figure out my new iphone that ended in the use of ALL my data for the month (I think it was searching for internets all day and night maybe)

A homeless dude asking me if I am a guy or a girl... weird!

An evening picnic with them team, which consisted of mostly listening to stories of debauchery... I don't think I'm cool enough to be part of this organization!

And a glorious morning spin with a little singletrack exploring. It was hard to 'respect the wisdom of the Inuit' and not overdo, but I thoroughly enjoyed the big trees, Montana air, and green mountains all around me.
Big trees... swoon.

Now I'm off to read and eat a croissant... good pre race strategy... yes?

Thursday, June 18, 2015

School's Out For Summer ( errr, Forever!!!!)

And just like that it's over (for now). My 5 year teaching career came to an end today at 10am, when my 3rd period Algebra 1 students turned in their finals and walked out the door, leaving me with a very empty classroom. Reality hasn't really sunk in yet. I used to daydream about this moment, about the idea of racing bikes full time, about not waking up at 4:30am every day and always being exhausted. It's hard to believe and super exciting that this is officially my new reality.
While I'm excited to see where the next few years take me, I will miss being a high school teacher. I will miss the clean, quite, empty classroom every morning. Checking my email, planning out the day, and greeting the students as they slowly make their to their seats in the morning. I will miss eavesdropping on freshmen's bizarre conversations, the constant questions of 'Do you have a pencil?" 'Can I go to the bathroom?' and 'Are we taking a TEST!?' and the groans when I tell them we are switching seats.
Sweet note the 1st period kiddos wrote me when I was sick last week.  There's even a picture of a bike on the front :)
Over the past 5 years I have seen a huge shift in standards, taught a year of 1-to-1 instruction (each kid got a laptop), and learned a ton about classroom management. I made an unreasonable number of worksheets, spent hours wracking my brain about how best to introduce content, and lost my temper once or twice. I bike commuted 15 or more miles about 4 days a week average for 6 years in a row, and coached two years of track and cross country.
Ryan, 4 years ago his biceps were smaller than mine... not so much anymore. And flowers from the outgoing seniors, a very sweet end of the year tradition at THS.
Although I am feeling very nostalgic right now, I am also out of control excited about what the next few years have in store. I am ridiculously grateful for this opportunity, and so excited to make RidebikerAlliance, ShoAir Intl and Cannondale proud! It still hasn't completely sunk in yet, but this is it! And right now I'm sitting at the Denver Intl Airport, getting ready to fly to Missoula for MSLXC2K15!!! Let the season of full time bike racing begin!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Kenda Cup Series Recap

Ok, so I'm definitely a poor sport, and have no interest in writing a recap of the final race in the Kenda Cup Series (because I didn't win, haha). It was a pretty tough weekend with my body still recovering from this epic head cold, and my legs refusing to deliver after a week of waiting around to ride bikes till I was healthy. I did have a super fun time during the downhill sections of the race, trying to pin it as much as possible to make up for lost time on the aerobic sections. I also had a blast hanging out with the rad SoCal mountain bike racing scene, have I mentioned before how fun the people in SoCal are? 

I do want to recap the Kenda Cup West series though (because I won that, haha). I feel super lucky to have a fun, competitive, multi-location race series here in SoCal where I can shred bikes, suffer, sweat, cry, smile and meet tons of awesome people who live all over Southern California and love the same thing I do, mountain bikes!
The series consisted of 7 races this year (of which I participated in 6): Vail Lake, Bonelli #1, Fontana, Bonelli #2, Santa Ynez, (Big Bear Shootout #1) and Big Bear Shootout #2. 

Vail lake was a total crap shoot because of the epic rain that choose to fall non-stop pretty much only when we were racing (seriously it was sunny that afternoon). Despite sliding around on the slick, torn up course I managed to win, and had a blast getting totally covered in mud. 

Bonelli #1 was my favorite race of the series (for obvious reasons). The course was fun, I got to talk to so many cool/fast/famous people, it was a dream, AND I placed 4th.

A few days before Fontana I came down with a slight cold, so it was a bit more challenging, and the tactics from the fast women were crazy. I still had a blast rocking the Scalpel and came in 9th.

Next we were back at Bonelli Park, with a slightly different course, and a little steeper competition. I pre-rode the course with the world champion Catherine Pendrel, and had a great time cleaning the A-line on each lap. I'm pretty sure I gave this race everything I had, but was a bit disappointed in myself when I learned 5th and 6th place were within a minute of me at the finish. 7th wasn't too shabby a finish, but another Bonelli podium would have been pretty sweet.

The race up at the Dirt Club in Santa Ynez was a lot less competitive, just two of us in the pro women's field. I had a great time racing with the boys, and after crossing the line in 1st I threw in an extra lap for good measure. 

Then I got epically sick, and pretty much took a whole week off the bike (throw in a whole night of not sleeping while chaperoning grad night on Thursday and you have the ingredients of a sucky race). There were only two of us again, but this time the other chick was Leslie Patterson, the XTerra world champion. I led the race until the last fire road climb, but had to relinquish the win due to my less than race ready health, and very unhappy legs. It was still fun seeing all the usual suspects, and hitting so much singletrack during the race!

And that's it, Kenda Cup West is over! I asked a bunch of other racers what their plans are now, many said nationals, or the Grizzly 100. For me it's off to Montana in a few days, then CO Springs for the final US Cup, and then a nice long summer of traveling, racing, meeting new people and riding bikes in fun places! 

Congrats to everyone who stood on the podium this weekend! You all worked so hard, you inspire me to race hard, and make me proud to represent SoCal!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Looking Back/Looking Forward

It's Wednesday night and I'm still sick, in bed. Didn't ride a bike today, may not get to ride a bike tomorrow. This time of year is especially busy, with Grad night tomorrow night (I volunteered to chaperone because I can't work at graduation), State Championships on Sunday, end of the year staff party Sunday night, finals next week, and more traveling to race my bike next Thursday. I should also be laying down another serious block of training to prepare for some really important upcoming races, think Missoula XCT and CO Springs US Cup, but instead I am sitting on my butt, waiting to be healthy.

The worst part is that I can look back at the recent past and identify a few key decisions I made that most likely put me here. Traveling to CO for a little over 30 hours to race at altitude is probably the biggest decision I made to get here, but I'm going to say that one was worth it. On Sunday, when I landed in Orange County, Brendan picked me up and we drove straight to Laguna to ride bikes. That's the big one I should have done differently. I knew in my head that catching up on sleep was the right thing to do, but riding bikes with my favorite people on my favorite local trails was too tempting. I may have also jumped in the ocean after, and then gone home and made mulberry pie instead of napping. Pretty lousy decision making.

I'm pretty sure if I had slept instead, today I would be healthy enough to have done intervals after school. Instead I might not even get to do them tomorrow. It's easy to obsess about what I should have done differently, the hard part is to put that behind me. To look forward, focus on what's going to make me healthy now and stay focused on making the right decisions in the future. I am a little scared I will keep making terrible decisions, but the pain of being off the bike is pretty good conditioning to help me not make better choices in the future.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Go Pro Mountain Games (The Best Worst Race)

Go Pro Mountain Games was a race I looked forward to for a long time. Traveling to Vail, CO at the beginning of June, after a nice long mid-season lull in racing sounded like a fun way to jump back into things. Plus the whole event looked ridiculously fun, SUP races down white water rapids, bouldering, slack line competitions, and dogs jumping off piers? How cool is that?!

What I didn't plan for when I booked my plane tickets, and registered for the XC race was coming down with a head cold two days before the race, a flight into Denver that was extended 2 hours because of weather with a screaming child next to me, and my brother waking me up at 5am on Sat morning (after going to bed at 12:30am). These are not the ingredients of a successful travel heavy race weekend. 

But, I already paid my way to Colorado, so I figured what the heck, why not jack myself up on coffee, drive out to Vail (2 hours from said brother's house) and give this bike race my best shot. And I'm so freaking glad I did. Here are some highlights of the race/day in Vail at the Go Pro Games.
The first things I stumbled across when I arrived in Vail looking for a port-a-potty and registration was a massive 100 person yoga session out in the open, and a kid doing stunts on a slack line over white water rapids. These people take outdoor recreation very seriously!

Right as it was time to warm up, the rain came. Cold, wet rain. With a head cold, and no sleep... Oddly enough though, the warm up put me in a much better mood (despite the wet kit and burning lungs from elevation). By the end of my 20ish minutes of openers and riding around I was super stoked on bikes!

The race started a little slower than a US Cup race would have, but I soon realized that was because of the muddy trails/fire roads and the elevation. I was sitting pretty comfortably in 4th on Evelyn's wheel when a really slick section of the climb forced us all to jump off our bikes and run. You would think with all the hike-a-bike-ing I've done with the rads I would crush the running section of the race, but this one stupid 100 yard section of trail caused a gap to open up, and I was never able to fill it. I could feel the elevation burning in my throat and lungs when I was running... it hurt. (stole that great mud picture, thanks Linda Guerrette)
What else hurt like crazy was that stupid climb. The course was basically half up and half down hill. The up was excruciating, and about 2/3 of the way into the climb on the first lap I promised myself I would drop out when I got to the bottom. My throat hurt, my head hurt, and it seemed silly to be throttling myself with a head cold and no sleep. 
(Photo cred Linda Guerrette)
THEN the descent happened, holy crap! The trail network back down the mountain was just a non-stop fun, flow trailesq blast full of perfectly bermed turns, little jumps and rocky rooty goodness. I was giggling pretty much the entire way down. At the bottom I decided it didn't matter if everyone in the race passed me, I would do that climb two more times if it meant I got to descend that trail twice as well!

Somehow I was able to hold onto 4th place through the second and third laps (did I mention 1400 ft of climbing on each lap at about 8000 ft above sea level?) thoroughly enjoying the descent each time, and really destroyed my lungs and throat on lap three. 

I think bike racing might be like giving birth, because the agony you feel in the race is so quickly forgotten by the feeling of elation when you cross the finish line. Bonus is when your pseudo team mate wins the race!

ITS THE BEST DAY!!! How I feel after every bike race. 
The rest of the day was spent unsuccessfully searching for something to eat in Vail (everything was either ungodly expensive or there was a 2 hour wait), and crying on a bus stop bench because I was so exhausted/hungry and I had to wait till 3:30 for the podium. It was a pretty pathetic sight, but I did buy fried chicken on the drive back to Denver and ate it like a wild animal on I-70. 

Other random highlights include the good people of CO calling me smiley when they cheered for me, that made my day because that's my CA nickname. And getting to see my cutest ever niece and nephew. My brother seriously makes the cutest kids. Ever.

And then I had to head back to CA at 8am on Sunday, which means it was basically the shortest, most exhausting weekend of my life! And I would do it again in a heart beat!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Weddings and Head Colds and Stuff?

 You know what's really kinda sucky? Working hard for three weeks, yearning to be at the Euro World Cups but staying in the US and teaching school every day, and then, right before finally getting to race again (in CO no less) coming down with a head cold! So that't whats been happening in this little corner of the world, lots of near vomit intervals, and now a serious dose of disappointment.

To possibly beat the cold out and still have a shot of enjoying/racing fast in CO I stayed home from school today, slept in, and am taking it as easy as possible. I secretly am very much looking forward to the days when staying home/training full time will be my life every day... :)

Here's a quick update on life/training lately.

Last weekend we went to NorCal to relive our wedding at Compass Rose Gardens, just this time we were celebrating the love and med school graduation of Dr. Mayers and Dr. Mayers. It's a weird to have known someone all the way through med school, but we couldn't be more proud of these guys and their love and stuff. The ceremony was hilarious, the snacks were unbelievable and the dancing was out of control, just how I like it. Here are some pictures of all our cute friends and their loves.

All these people taught me stuff about riding bikes, and life and stuff. I love them so. 
Also, they are really good dancers, like seriously. Arm flailing and everything. 
While we were up north I got to do a vomit intervals on my favorite roads, in my favorite towns, surrounded by towering redwood trees, ferns, and so many pretty flowers. It's been a long time since I was in Sonoma county in May, I had completely forgotten how pretty the Sonoma Coast is in spring. I even took the road bike up Willow creek road, the best ever dirt road on the planet.

I also go to hit my favorite state park, Annadel, for an intense 2 hour battle with myself and my feelings. Good news, Annadel can cure any wrong and at the end of the ride all was forgiven and forgotten. Long story short, it's not always easy to be married to someone with a significant difference in athletic ability. Also, sorry to anyone I did not smile at or say hi to, I was pretty focused on hurting myself for the first hour of my ride. Then the trees, the rocks and the flow of the trail soothed my anger and gave me all the happiness back.

Other random highlights include eating Wildflower pastries and drinking Flying Goat coffee with sister and her fiancee (egyptian sticky bun and chocolate strawberry scones... swoon), seeing sisters gardening progress = so proud and a little jealous, and getting to see my favorite in laws for like 30 seconds (it was a whirlwind weekend).
OTH racers, now that's a fun crowd...)

And this week has been full of intervals, reviewing for finals with the kiddos at school, and one exciting evening of spectating at Over the Hump (possibly the reason I am sick, lots of cheering and missing my bed time... woops).

Now it's off to bed, again (I got out of bed like 3 hours ago...) for more sleep in hopes the cold will be gone by the weekend! Wish me luck!