We finally got back from sunny CA and the weather wasted no time in welcoming us home........
Seriously? It's like summer or something around here and the sun should be blazing, flowers blooming.
Being home was weird since we had been in our new house a whole 14 days total before we left for 5 weeks. And now here we were back getting used to things all over again. I even at one point told myself that I needed to put a project off until I got home. The kicker was that I WAS home sitting on my couch. Change is definitely an interesting thing although it hasn't affected me too much since I am used to being at different place every other weekend.
The morning of the race I woke up and it was cold, dreary, snowy and just plain yucky outside.
We had the heat on, the fireplace going and I was happily warm and extremely content. The thought of getting outside in that nasty cyclocross weather to race wasn't entirely appealing since it was May but I drug myself out the door to go ride in circles with a bunch of other crazy people that wanted to do the same thing.
Driving into the venue at Soldier Hollow looked like this.....not too bad by this time really as it was warming up some. Note the snow in the background that forced the promoter to re-route the course a bit.
I was reminded quickly just how much extra time you need on days like this to prepare for the race. Between fiddle farting with bike stuff and changing clothes 500 times, I manage to squirrel away most of my warm up. Yeah...not so pro to say the least. Whoops.
The first lap was a slippy and slidey one, especially since most of us showed up with "dry" condition tires. I just see that as optimistic, but again it really was.....not so pro. And I almost paid the price for it too as I slid sideways on one of the first corners on the race but was able to keep it upright somehow. You don't have to tell me twice to slow down!!!
So if it wasn't the corner telling me to slow down it was going to be the altitude on this day - or at least it was going to try. Here it was my 4th day back at altitude after 5 weeks gone and the 4th day back is always my worst. Sweet timing. Again, not so pro since I could have come back to altitude a lot earlier.
And, yes, I suffered the most extreme hurt that one can feel while racing at altitude after being gone. My legs were on fire looking for all that oxygen that CA had to offer and so were my lungs. I was breathing as deep as I could trying to make use of every inch of my screaming lungs.
I honestly thought I was gonna die during the whole race. Yeah, racing hurts but this was to the extreme as my body screamed for oxygen. The word misery comes to mind actually.
But apparently I am stubborn enough and know how to suffer with the best of them enough because I was able to put down the right amount of wattage to come across the line in first place. I have never been so happy to breath again normally!!!