I have been locked in the Westin LAX for 5 days straight without rest. Fifteen hours of work every day. Hotel meals. Boring treadmill runs at 5:30 in the morning.
When I step into the light outside the front doors of the hotel to catch the airport shuttle I am stunned.
This is the first sun I’ve seen in all those days. The first fresh air. And I use that term loosely because I am in LA, after all.
My flight is delayed after we board. We sit on the runway for an hour. I don’t get home until 1:00am.
And then, on Monday, there’s Forest Park. And my new riding buddy (who just placed 2nd in the B field!).
The day is clear and bright. Continue reading
Leif Erickson trail is dark and damp. We roll up it, turning over pedals with legs that are something more than tired.
We’re recovering. Neither one of us really understands this “recovery ride” thing, but we’ve learned to have faith and take chances. We’re giving it a shot.
We are alone. At least so far as cyclists are concerned.
We pass one or two runners coming down, ducking out of Forest Park just in the nick of time. Outrunning the setting sun.
We’re riding straight into the darkness and we don’t care because we have lights. And a mission. Continue reading
I don’t really know how to race a bike, but I do know how to suffer.
Yesterday I proved that:
At 5:00 in the morning an alarm goes off on the other side of the bed and I lay perfectly still. There are rules in this household and one of those rules is that the The Princess doesn’t move on the weekends until a warm cup of coffee is placed in her hands. I consider this my just desserts after a full week of waking up at 4:30am. Luckily, I have a boyfriend who agrees with me.
My coffee arrives at 5:15am and so begins what we now refer to as another “Cyclocross Sunday”. Continue reading
Western Nationals starts today in Salem. We got a 3:00pm draw and my parents are driving down from Seattle to see the game. It’s a massive three-day, double elimination tournament. Winner goes all expenses paid to World’s in Oklahoma.
No pressure. Continue reading
This is supposed to be Gear Friday – I even have a really killer piece of gear lined up to tell you about – but then life happens.
Life happens and gets big. People fill me and my chest expands. I entertain reminder after reminder of our frailty.
At 7:34am I have to stop reading email. There is a switch inside of me that flips when I feel the lump in my throat forming. One email links to my cousin’s journal on her CaringBridge Site, in which she asks for prayer for her two year old daughter, ‘Tana. The baby girl goes in for surgery today to have her entire lung removed in what is to be the final, last-ditch effort to rid her of the cancer that threatens to take her life.
I don’t pray. Continue reading
People tell me all the time that they are amazed by my energy/motivation/commitment/determination/insanity. And while I’m flattered by this, I remain mostly unimpressed with myself.
Daniel destroyed us this morning at boot camp.
It didn’t help that I pulled a rookie move and showed up to the workout without having any sort of snack beforehand. Usually it’s just half an apple or a handful of blueberries – it doesn’t seem like it should make that much difference, but it does.
I got a brutal reminder of that this morning as I suffered the wrath of a Week 4 Thursday muscle-burner.
Fifteen minutes in I was holding a push-up plank, dripping a near-steady stream of sweat onto my mat and seriously beginning to wonder if I was going to make it. Daniel’s voice reached me through the ether of my suffering: “I know you don’t think you’re going to make it but you are. I know you are.”
He wasn’t talking to me. He was talking to everyone. In fact, he was on the other side of the court when he said it but it came through loud and clear. I tightened my abs, gritted my teeth, and started counting the drops that were falling off the tip of my nose.
I went into my pain cave.