Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Another cross season draws to a close.

Cyclocross season goes by way too fast. It is now January and it is pretty much over. After an extended holiday trip to the "great white north" to see my family, I really have no race fitness left. Apparently cookies and wine are not the ideal training food. Fitness or not, we had a couple of races left this month; little things like the TN state championships, so I of course registered and hoped for the best.

The TN state race was accompanied by a UCI race the day before. There was an opportunity to actually make some money and get a killer result. I decided my cookie induced figure needed to get some miles in the legs and see what sort of miracle I could pull off. We got home from up north the 29th of December and I put in a big hard training block in hopes of reminding my body that we were in fact a bike racer. Ouch. I always forget how quickly fitness goes away. As part of my "shock it back into shape"approach I decided to head to Rome, Ga for their first January series race. Yes, it hurt even worse than I thought it would. I felt as if I was moving in slow motion the entire race and even though I won, I never felt good. Okay, mission accomplished. My butt was kicked!!!!

With a couple of weeks of training back in the legs we were suddenly treated to a "recovery week" last week. SNOW. It doesn't snow in Chattanooga. At least not 9 inches. This is a town that shuts down at the prediction of snow. We were non-functional for a week. There was a bunch of time on the rollers and a day or two of added recovery. I was fresh for the weekend, whether I wanted to be or not.

This past weekend was the UCI Kingsport Cup/ TN State Championship weekend. I went into it with NO expectations. There were some strong racers registered and I was skeptical of my fitness. All I could do was hold on and hope for the best. I had no excuses, Mike at the Trek Store of Chattanooga spent a LOT of time healing my poor bike from the damage I did to it at Nationals. the bike was working flawlessly, hopefully the body would step up to the challenge.

UCI win!!!!
photo courtesy of Bart Nave

The UCI weekend started with some drama with Shannon almost missing the start (her fantastic ability with directions was once again the culprit) and me walking her through the turns to the park 30 minutes before the start. Whew. Made it. At the gun, there were immediately 3 of us together off the front of the race. It was a flat, fast and unexpectedly (mostly) dry course. It was going to be a tactical race. After we attacked each other a few times with no success I determined it was time to sit in and let someone else make a mistake. The other two riders both tried a few more attacks and it looked like we were going to be in for a 3-way sprint when there was an attack and suddenly there was just two of us. Okay Kym, there is one lap to go, it is now or never. I did my thing. I attacked on the only mud on the whole course and I got a gap. Not a huge gap but big enough. I drilled it and never looked back. I won!!! I won a UCI race!!! Holy crap. I may never do that again but it was a killer feeling. My weekend (and my incredible season) was complete.

Sunday was the TN State CX race. I am the three time defending champion so it was time to step up. No relaxing on day two. Mark's race was the first one of the day for us and he started us off with a WIN. I am so proud of him. My husband has been my biggest supporter for many years; he is coach, mechanic, cook driver and emotional support. He has put his own racing second many times so I can live my dream. It was the highlight of my season seeing him cross that finish line. I think that was the most well deserved win of the weekend. Great job, babe!!!

After that inspiring ride it was time for me to go around the merry-go-round once more. They said go and my start was abysmal. I couldn't get clipped in and my focus was not there. Time to rally the troops. I had a quick discussion with my body, we agreed to disagree and I painfully took the lead. I never looked back. I added State CX Champion to my season's accomplishments.

I am ready for some play time. We have a few other "maybe" races coming up, all are small and local and will be done last minute if we feel like it. No more travel or stress for a while. My 2010 season is now officially over. What a ride!!!!

2011 racing starts in March.