UP TO DATE
It’s been a while since I last updated. I’ve raced a lot, trained a lot, and have been able to spend a good bit of time at home. The past few races I’ve competed in were Redlands, Joe Martin, GILA, AMGEN, Winston Salem and Pro Nationals. I feel like I’ve been in a “plateau” phase - as I haven’t been experiencing the results that I desire, but I'm trusting my training plan and I am working hard to execute it consistently. Hard work eventually reveals itself, right? As mentioned before, I switched coaches and the weak points in my past years performance have now became strong and I love it. I will preach this forever, I am always glad I went on every single ride (even when my emotions said otherwise.)
I have to remind myself that it can’t ALL be about results. Yes, they’re what everyone desires, but I can’t afford to hang my hat on them, because if I wind up short of the intended target, it’s far too easy to allow myself to start identifying with those defeats and successes. Really, there has to be a line separating it all from who I actually am- my identity. I’ve mentioned this before, and I’ll say it again - I really enjoy spending time with the families that host us at races. Some of the greatest take aways from this season have been birthed from conversation with these wonderful people.
Here’s a brief recap of the past couple of months- Boise, Idaho in the middle of July for a Time Trial on Friday and a Crit on Saturday, and on Sunday my teammates and I participated in the Hincapie Fondo. This is one of my favorite trips of the year, the community is great and the riding is awesome! Our team had the opportunity to meet with a few of the Challenged Athletes Foundation riders and learn what CAF was about. “CAF creates opportunities for disabled people, children especially, to be involved in sport by providing grants that give access to adaptive sports equipment, camps, and clinics. It opens the door and gives hope to those who have had severe trauma as an outlet to not sit alone in their circumstance and get involved and find fulfillment in what they are able to do,” how awesome!
We raced ChronoKristinArmstrong UCI Time Trial in Glenns Ferry on Friday. This place was in the middle of nowhere and it was super beautiful. The roads in Idaho are tough. They pavement is “heavy-set”- chunky, if you will. Which makes for slow rolling resistance. The air is hot and dry, and the potential for wind is usually high. Fortunately we had perfect weather. Starting at 9am, the temps stayed cool- 75 degrees, with a cross-headwind from the right. Early on in the race there are two pretty significant hills which you have to ride hard up to keep the time on your side, ouch! The rest of the way was rolling. Once we hit the turn around the wind was in our favor, keeping the speed high on the way back to the finish line and the big descents helped us reach about 50mph. I finished 7th, a better ride for me which brings excitement and the hard work is paying off!
The crit on Saturday evening was in downtown Boise, right in front of the Capitol Building. Boise always has a massive crowd which makes for a fun atmosphere during the race. Our team waited until the last 30 minutes of the race to initiate attacks and cover things that we want to go up the road. It was truly all team work. Jen L, Shayna, Chloe, and I did everything we could and needed to so that Jen V. could sit in and sprint at the end. Jen pulled off the win for the third year in a row!
On Sunday our team rode in the Hincapie Fondo. Holy smokes. Between the heat, 20 miles of gravel, running out of water and flatting with 4 miles to go… the 80 mile ride was amazing! I definitely had my moments of, “how much longer is this section?” But at the end of the day I enjoyed the event. Over 400 people showed up at 8am to the start line and rode their desired distance. I was brought back to a my childhood memories of eating Uncrustables as they were available at the feed stations, I drank the most mini cans of coke I ever have in one ride. I crashed. I walked up a small hill in the gravel because my poor road tires couldn’t keep any grip, haha. It was a fun opportunity and a great way to spend the day riding bikes with my teammates and friends.
Next was the Rooted Vermont Gravel race in Richmond, VT. It was my first time visiting Vermont, and it was incredible! Rooted Vermont was my second gravel race, I finished 6th, and I truly loved everything about that race. The course was challenging in a number of ways- from the punchy climbing, to technical descents. When I crossed the finish line I remember thinking aloud, “wow, that was hard… but awesome!” The atmosphere was amazing and the people of Richmond really made a welcoming and loving impact. Ted and Laura King hosted the race and the town backed them through the whole process. I love that! Bringing the community together for an event and in return the riders, their families, and the race crew supported the local economy. I am already looking forward to next year!
I am currently writing this while in Superior, CO. training at altitude for the upcoming Colorado Classic. I am fortunate that my husband was able to come out for a few days to ride with me! It’s been a new and exciting season, this first year of marriage. Balancing our relationship and learning to set boundaries has been a challenge, but well worth the effort. We made a decision before the season began that 2 weeks was the maximum amount of time we would allow apart from one another. Though this little “rule” has added several flights to our already busy schedules, it’s worth it to do whatever it takes to maintain a connection. We’ve been so blessed to have been able to make this work throughout the season.
This isn’t necessarily cycling related, but I’ve been working on having fun with food. Managing a healthy relationship with food is tough as an athlete and I’m sure many folks can relate. We watch a lot of cooking shows and recently found Sam the Cooking Guy. He is way too funny and makes good food. I followed his Bacon, Spinach, and Mushroom frittata recipe - I added a little prosciutto, queso fresco, avocado and salsa on the side. For someone (me) who eats a lot of the same food every day, going outside of my “comfort zone” is a bit intimidating. It’s new territory for me and I am embracing the journey.