As we get closer and closer to the kick off of my season, I’m slowly nearing the end of my previous season highlights. BUT, we can’t forget
No one knows this but me, August 2017 I wasn’t planning on racing Nationals. After finding out the news I needed surgery on my left hip I was pretty devastated and frustrated. I had spent the previous 6 months preparing for the 2017 season with my rehab. I wasn’t entirely ready to jump into another surgery after mentally planning and physically preparing for a cx season. So I decided surgery in December made the most sense, since my surgeon repeatedly told me to have no expectations and how my hip wouldn’t feel good and my season wouldn’t be a good one. My reasoning was, if I knew I needed a second surgery, and my season was sucking, why would I wait an additional 3 weeks just for ONE race, plus I had met my out of pocket so surgery would have been free. Well....we all know how that turned out! After the Trek CXC World Cup, I knew I wasn’t having surgery in December!!!
I was so nervous on this day in January, I thought I was going to throw up before the race, but once it was go time, my body and mind did it’s thing. This was the most focused and calm I think I have ever raced, I’ll try to tap into more of that this season!
Next up in my previous season highlights is
3️⃣ Pan Ams!
I knew I was coming into the season a bit slower than most, as by June 1st I was only riding my bike for 1 hour at a time. It took a long time to build my endurance back up, and a bit longer to get that speed and fitness up there as well, that by the time the season started I didn’t have a ton of intensity in my legs. I knew it was going to take time to build, and by the time we reached Pan Ams, I felt like the pieces came together. The course, a mix of technical hilly terrain, really suited me, and I raced really smart. I knew I needed to pace myself with the long climbs as to not blow up, and that’s just what I did, notching myself a 4th place finish.
As I prep for my first local “practice” race today I’m looking back at another favorite moment from last year:
2️⃣ a combo weekend from Sacramento and Boulder. I couldn’t decide between the two, but then I realized the reason Boulder went so well, was because of Sacramento. It was in Sacramento where I felt like the pieces of everything from the previous 8 months of recovery came together. It was when I truly felt powerful with right hip 2.0. I carried my new found confidence straight into Boulder with the goal of a win. Boulder day 2 tops the list of a favorite moment for so many reasons.
•I didn’t play my cards correctly day 1, so come day 2 I changed my plan and raced so much smarter, and came out with a win 🥇
•My surgeon told me my season wouldn’t be good. I proved him wrong, time after time, after time.
•I walked away from this race weekend with so much physical confidence in right hip 2.0, I stopped looking at it as a limiter, and found it to be my strength.
As the cyclocross season has kicked off across the country, I can’t help but be a bit nostalgic about my season last year after hip surgery #1. It was my season to prove to myself that hard work will pay off, and a little patience can take you far. Being that I’m going into the season after having my other hip operated on, I wanted to take the next 14 days prior to the kick off of my UCI season to choose some of my favorite moments from the 2017 season.
1️⃣ The first UCI race back Post Op. This one (as I’m sure Reno will as well) will always hold a special place in my heart. I was so nervous prior to this race, I was practically in tears. When we line up for these races it’s always the question of “where will I stack up compared to the rest”. You can’t help but wonder if you prepared yourself well enough. I was full of anxiety, doubts, and wonder. Where was my fitness? Would my hips survive? Will it hurt? I crossed the line in 10th, and set the precedent for the rest of my season.
Today was “take your CX bike MTBing day”. My Vault and I had fun, my @stansnotubes Grail MK3 handled the rooty, rocky, loose XC trails of Galbraith no problem, and the @maxxisbike Speed Terranes might be my new favorite tire. No flats, no burping, no mechanicals. It was a good day.
Massive thanks goes out to the @wmbcmtb for all their hard work with trail building, maintenance, and negotiating for long term trail usage. I say it daily, I’m lucky to call such a rad place home.
I would like to think I’m getting closer to ending my 2 year slog through my hip journey. It hasn’t been perfect, it hasn’t been easy, I’ve cursed, I’ve cried, I’ve panicked. It’s been 1.5 years since hip 1, and 6.5 months since hip 2, yet it all feels like yesterday.
I used to be strong.
I used to be agile.
I used to be fearless.
I walk through life timid of a re-injury.
I’m scared to try new things on my bike, fearful of crashing while my hip is still healing.
I don’t do crazy silly things in the gym anymore, I’m too timid.
I have to carefully think about how I get up and down to the floor, as surgery has caused all sorts of weird pains in other places.
I don’t talk about this often, as I feel I should be thankful and grateful to do the things I can do, and I am doing. As I head into the season slightly fearful of where my body is physically, where my fitness and strengths are (...not...) I continuously remind myself of the journey I’ve been on, the friends I’ve made along the way, the support I’ve received, you haven’t gone unnoticed.
If I didn’t believe I was intended to live this journey, I’d be a completely different athlete than I am.
My fear has given me new found strength both physically and mentally.
I have gained confidence among my timid-ness.
I have compassion that never previously existed.
1 year ago, 1 month before the season, I couldn’t imagined how I was going to race my bike, as my hip still hurt. This year, while the little devil still sits atop my shoulder telling me evil things, I have the confidence to brush it aside. I’m not perfect, I have strength to gain, power to improve upon, and fitness to work towards, but this season will be about growth as an athlete, being the best I can, building up my new team @pivotmaxxis, and enjoying the ride.
My time in Utah consisted of a bunch of this (giggling uncontrollably as I try to be serious for photos), some bike rides, a little bit of @ritualchocolate, and loads of time with my teammies @sofithevilla and @jameydriscoll.
I’m looking forward to kicking off my season at @reno_cyclocross Sept. 19th!
I spent the second half of the day yesterday teaching these well behaved kids some CX skills! We worked on cornering, dismounts, remounts (#janefondaremount), off cambers, barriers, the WORKS!
I love passing on the knowledge I’ve gained from racing, plus my body awareness/kinesiology background to help others learn and better their skills. I find so much satisfaction in being able to break down a poor movement/skill and help correct the kids, in order to improve.
Teaching skills and clinics aren’t as easy as one may think. It requires a lot of thought in starting from the basics and building to more challenging tasks, while keeping confidence and willingness to try, high.
My love for teaching these skills increases every year. If you’re looking to put together a clinic, please reach out!
Now it’s off to Utah for a little team camp/photo shoot. If you aren’t already, be sure to follow the team @pivotmaxxis