Friday, December 18, 2009

The Year in Review

The Michigan State Cyclocross Championship was my last race of the season. Even if I planned on more races, due to an unfortunate crash on the first lap, it still would have closed out my season. I ended up with a severely sprained thumb, and, after a couple weeks, it just hasn't been healing. Turns out the reason my thumb hasn't been healing, is that I have a torn ligament. Torn ligament = surgery... So, on Tuesday I go under the knife. After the ligament is repaired, it's 5 weeks in a cast followed by several weeks of PT. So, no riding outside for me until the cast is off and I have some strength/mobility back in my hand. My trainer and I are going to be intimate friends.

I've just been taking it easy these last couple weeks. I started a new gig at my company and there's been a lot to learn. So that's kept me busy (busy would actually be an understatement...) So, now that I've got some down time, it's a great opportunity for some reflection on the season past.

  • Road Season: After an 8 year hiatus from road racing, I was finally giving it another shot. I got my license and I was starting out as a Cat 4. I can pretty much sum it up in one word: Disappointment. After a series of mid-pack finishes, a bad crash in June that I never quite recovered from, and a stalled out season-end, I was glad to say goodbye. This put me in a really bad spot coming into my "real" season, cyclocross. I was kinda depressed, over-trained, and just not enjoying myself. This taught me something. First, I had set some unrealistic expectations. And second and probably most important - Fun first

  • Cyclocross Season: With an upgrade to B this year, I knew there would be some challenges. My crappy road season didn't help matters any and my first few 'cross races definitely reflected that. I started to find my rhythm near the end of October and I kinda stalled out. It seemed like everybody was improving except me. Even guys I was beating a couple races before were kicking my butt. That's when I remembered my new mantra - fun first. If you focus on having fun, everything else will come around. An even if it doesn't, you at least had a good time. This isn't my job, and God knows, I don't need it to feel like one.

That's why I have mixed feelings about the 'cross season coming to an end.  On one hand (my good one...) I had a lot of fun, and hanging out with all my fellow 'crossers is a good time, but on the other, I was wore out. Well, now I've got all the R&R I could ever want, as I rehabilitate my thumb over these next several weeks. Expect to see lots of blog entries and I'll update on how the surgery went (and the good drugs I'm prescribed...) when it's over.

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