Getting There

I’m in that phase of my training where I’m starting to see and feel the hardwork I’ve put in pay off on the bike. The long rides and multiple back-to-back days doing tempo and sprint intervals are translating into feelings of strength, power and confidence. Combine this with time on the mountain bike and I’m feeling more and more like the cyclo-cross racer I know I can be. The mountain biking has done two things for me so far: given me a break from the road and taught me that I can get better and improve. There is nothing more tangible than riding over an obstacle, through a rock garden or down a descent that only a week ago left me stumbling, braking, and shaking my head.

I’ve had a couple of decent days of riding on this long weekend in May. Saturday I hit up Kanata Lakes bright and early for three hours on the mountain bike. Me, the trails, my iPod and my new leg armour. The ride was excellent. I did get into some trails that were a bit “heavy” for me. I did get lost. Ending up popping out onto Huntmar. But thanks to a passing cyclist who happened to be the husband of a friend I used to ride and play hockey with, I was well on my way back to the trails. When the three hours was over, I really wanted to keep riding… I would have but I had to get the car back for the Scott boys (and besides three hours is plenty the day after my test). So about the new leg armour: not really happy with what this “protection” has done to my knees… Essentially now I have massive scabs on the tops of both knees from the rubbing during the ride. I bought the correct size (medium), I tried tightening the straps, loosening the straps, etc. I’m not sure what to do. Suffice it to say I like training with the leg armour since scabs and rubbing aside, they did protect my knees on two occasions. Any suggestions on what to do to make the rubbing stop?

Sunday was about the road bike. Just a short and easy 2.5 hours on the road. Amazing how quickly the ride went by. I hit up some of my favorite roads and just enjoyed being out in the heat of the day. A good ride. Nice to have the fitness to just ride for 2.5 hours.

So, I’m going to be doing some racing soon. I’ve got the go-ahead to start coming out to the training crits and I’m going to race at the Preston St. Criterium and the OBC Grand Prix. Cool. Not a lot of road racing but enough to keep me happy. I really enjoy the training crits – hard, fast, aggressive and best of all, racing with lots of good friends in a welcoming environment. I’ve also got the 24 hours of Summer Solstice Race coming up with the KingsBridge boys.

Also decided to join the club out at the Creative Wheel Centre. Totally looking forward to riding with some new people. I learned after my ride on Saturday, that I need to mountain bike with people who are more skilled than me – it forces me to dig a bit deeper and really “try” to get through the tricky bits.

Lots of good stuff going on. Next on the list is getting my Ottawa Cross clothing sorted out for the upcoming season. I know it might seem early to do this, but I need to get the design finalized, submit the design/order to Champion Systems and then it takes six weeks to get the clothes. I don’t think the design will change much, it would be nice to add some new logos to the clothing… So if you want to sponsor me or know someone who would, I definitely am all ears!

Oh, hope you liked the Youtube video of my A Channel interview. I’ve gotten some good feedback on it. It would have been nice to have had more of a chance to talk about cyclo-cross, but maybe I’ll be on another time to talk about about cyclo-cross, Belgium, the World Cups, World Championships, and the amazing local racing scene…

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