Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Back Up to Speed

So just when I was getting good at staying on top of updating, I go almost an entire month with no updates or anything. Quite pathetic really. But really, I feel like it's a good indicator as to how busy I have been since my last post. So, to back up a bit, since I last posted I made a quick trip down to Colorado Springs to meet with my coach Brady Irwin at CTS for some Lactate Threshold Testing and a Vo2 max test.

Also while I was down there I got to see great friend Sam Jurekovic and check out his place of residence. I am very thankful to have been able to crash on his couch and enjoy his incredible cooking. Sam is a great guy, and an amazing friend who is working very hard to have a life with his fiance Christina, who I actually got to meet finally.

But back to testing. The testing did not go quite as planned since I was still dealing with knee issues and so putting some power into the machine for the Vo2 Max portion of the test. Fortunately we were able to get enough data to get some good results. Not to give out my numbers, but I was not quite expecting results as good as they were. Aside from the nagging knee problem, it was a huge relief to see that me putting energy into cycling could lead to something. Not to say that lab tests will guarantee success, but still nice to see from a mental stand point. After coming back to the valley I went to see a physical therapist about my knee issue. I have been having knee problems since December of 2008. So needless to say I have been pretty fed up with not being able to put my all into racing in training due to knee pain and sub standard pedaling. But finally after all this time we have figured out the problem and tackled it with a hard regiment of stretching certain muscles and strengthening others that I hadn't.

During my time of rehabilitation I was still able to ride, just not at race pace or doing really intensive efforts. This was a bit frustrating, especially since during that time the weather was not particularly cooperative for riding and training, but when it was nice, it was really nice. Luckily I was able to snap this shot from the top of Mushroom Rock on a clear day. Pretty sweet shot of Sopris huh? Thankfully I have been having some good sensations and responding to the therapy quite well and was able to start racing again this past weekend. First up was the Independence Pass Hill Climb. This is one of my favorite races to do, one it's a local race, with pretty good competition and a sweet route. I love riding up the pass and having the whole road open to racing is so much fun. This years didn't go as smoothly due to lack of racing legs, but also some pretty strong winds. Not very happy with the result, but will have to accept it for what it is.

Next up was the Criterium. I am not a huge crit fan, but I really like this course as well mainly just because it's so fast and so much fun with 10 corners and some quick little descents. Also it's in downtown Aspen so lots of people come out to spectate. Things went much better in the crit, but I still need to work on my whole approach to crit racing since I felt like I was the strongest, or at least on of the strongest racers there, but only got fifth. Hadn't the wind been so prominent, I might have been able to finish a bit higher, but, once again, coulda woulda shoulda...

I was not too bummed either since I was able to make some money back with my finish and treat my mom and sister Nicole to some fine Aspen dining. Overall it was a great weekend with my legs finally starting to show up and also being able to spend some time with the rest of my family who I don't see very often at all.

We even got to take some photos, which is another rarity in it self. Next up on the calender is one event I have been dieing to do for years, the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic down in Durango, Colorado. It will be nice to get back to Durango and also finally race in an event as sweet as the Iron Horse. But before I do, I need to thank everybody who has been supporting me through this past month of craziness. It's hard to sum up how much I appreciate even just the smallest compliments and words of encouragement. Although I am not usually able to respond all the time, obviously since I can barely update this thing, I have really come to realize how much my racing means to me and others. So thank you everybody, and especially everybody at Honeystinger and Trek bikes for the awesome products. Thanks to Len Zanni for being an awesome Team manager and racer/friend. Huge thank you to Dave Gensch and his wonderful parents Wolf and Nancy, and of course my family, Rhiannon, Nicole, Mom and Dad.

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