I am on the mend and I am so excited about that. I placed 14th today which isn't stellar for me but given that I had NO sleep last night at all it wasn't too bad. I was pleased with the fact that I am coming around again and am feeling better overall again rib wise. I just started sleeping again as of 2 weeks ago (aside from last night of course) and that was after a month of hell and painful nights where I had interrupted sleep every night. But today I had no rib issues or pain and it didn't hurt to breathe during the race! Kathy is coming back!!!...........well just in time for the off season. Oh well.
So like I said, I raced this morning on NO SLEEP-what the!!? NONE. And when I say NONE I mean NONE. I went to bed at 10pm and just couldn't fall asleep. Not even for 5 minutes. I never dreamt or even got close. I thought about just getting up and writing letters or surfing the net or something but I just had to TRY and fall asleep at least. When it turned 2am I thought that would be the cut off and I would at least fall asleep a little but I didn't. I decided at that time that maybe it was my stomach needing more food because sometimes that is the case so I munched on a Cookies and Cream Power Bar while lying there wide awake but that was a "no go" as it didn't do the trick. Our XC race was starting at 9am so I wanted to be up at 5am so at about 4:45am or so I just got up since I was already up. It was weird being so awake at that time because I am NOT a morning person usually.
So I raced at 9am after being up for around 26 hours straight. I was in a daze when we started the race and was dazed during the race. When I started the race today I was told with a laugh by some of the team managers "Now NO mechanicals today Sherwin". It's been some kind of crazy season that way for me with crashing and cranking my stem to the left, losing brake function, bonking, throwing up, cracking my seat rail, cracking my ribs, dislocating my entire rib cage, flatting, having a loose seat mid race. Hmmm??? And that is just the list from the top of my head. But I didn't have any mechanicals today which was awesome.
I started strong and faded back a bit on the climb up the lollipop stick but I was happy with how the legs felt. I was so pinned on the climb too that I was nauseous the whole way up and there were thoughts that I was just not going to make another painful peddle stroke up the mountain. But I kept going as the thoughts of the unbearable pain drifted into and out of my head. I was pushing so hard. By the time I got to where we were doing the loops at the top of the mountain I was on the verge of popping. I could feel it because I know what it feels like when I am at that point. It is one that I will never forget: nauseousness, hazy/dazy feeling, NEEDING water in particular NOW, dry mouth and yes the feeling that you are actually peddling backwards. For me that all results in throwing multiple times, drinking lots of water, dry heaving and feeling sick for the next hour. That wasn't today but that happened to me at the Time Trial up the Luge track in Park City years ago and I will never ever forget it. So now when I get close to that point I KNOW to back of just a little which is what I had to do today and eventually got passed by a few a women while making my way around the lollipop. I think I was closer than I thought to popping too because as I climbed I wasn't feeling the love on loop #1. But as we descended and started heading out on loop #2 I started to feel good again as my body recovered from almost popping and I was able to re pass a few of the women that had passed me.
The next gal that had passed me had the advantage of being right in front of me on the technical singletrack descent leading to the finish and there was no room to pass. I had a few opportunities but every time I surged, she surged. She was having NONE of it. It made for super fun descent down to the finish line though as I was chasing her all the way down the mountain and trying to remember where I could and couldn't try and pass. But before I knew it we came around the last corner towards the finish line and bam..........she crossed the line first a second in front of me. I high fived her at the line because that was fun even though I lost the battle outright.
We all went to a mexican restaurant in Aspen (Chris and I had never been to Aspen before if you can believe it) for dinner. Here is the crew.......
Fists of Fury....Ron P
Blake the Snake:Sara not feeling the love:
et moi:Not pictured: Chris Sherwin, photographer
Party in the parking lot at the condo after dinn dinn: