So how do you go from leading an elite group of riders to finishing behind every person racing? Was it a lack of fitness, did I just give up? Nope, it was that back of mine again, and this time it royally went out on me. There is actually photo evidence of me having to walk (not run) up the hill, leaning on my bike for support. So while that part of the race really really sucked, the course itself was a blast. A good combination of techincal sections, long rolling straights, hills, and of course the annual mud pit that tends to be a staple of the Country Cross series (I've raced 3 Country Cross races, all 3 have had the biggest mud pits I've seen).
Another year in the books, another year of lessons. Last year I learned a lot about myself as an athlete- how far I could push myself, how much I had improved and how much I still needed to improve. This year I learned a lot about myself as a person- how humbling it is to DNF essentially every race since April, how much effort it takes to stay positive and see what you started through. Right now I simply wanted to take a little break from studying for school, and writing allows me to hide from my responsibilities for a few minutes. I wouldn't say I'm glad this season turned out the way it did, but I'm probably better off from it in the long run. It's showed me how much I like doing what I do as an athlete, and how much I'm willing to work to get back to where I was.
Photo Credit: Al Henderson. This man braved the elements to watch some amateur racers ride in the mud. Thank you Al!
|You don't really need a rear wheel to race cross...|
|This must have been on the first lap, before I was reduced to walking the hill!|
|Exhibit A- Hobbling up the hill|
|Umm... Apparently I'm going to throw up? What can I say, mud grosses me out.|