Monday, March 17, 2014

What A Week

Last Friday, March 7 West Virginia University started its 2014 Spring Break. That day was also the start of another chapter in my cycling career, The Dynamic Physical Therapy Cycling Team meeting.  I was fortunate enough to have the collegiate races at Virginia Tech moved to a later date as well as the cancellation of George Mason's race so that I was able to meet and hang out with the wonderful people that make up DPT cycling.
The team training camp is what helped me to get over the hump in the struggle to be ready for 2014.  With collegiate nationals coming right around the corner, it was important for me to get myself back in racing shape quickly.  Saturday started with a beautiful day, with a riding distance around 50 miles or so.  Mr. Derek Clarke and I battled it out for hill tops.  While he pretty much took them all, i got to experience the accelerations you don't normally get on the stationary trainer.  Then, Sunday was a little more than expected after the social gathering at Apothecary Ale House.  While, I was ready for a 25 mile flat ride, I ended up with another 50 mile day, with probably more climbing than the first day.  I WAS COOKED.
Monday, I got to start my spring break.  It was nice to be back in Wheeling WV with my family.  I also knew this was my chance to keep my momentum of training going with a big week of riding.  So, Monday turned into another 50+ mile ride, but one of the most fun days I've ever had by myself on a bike.  I found new roads and they were all beautiful.  Tuesday was another gorgeous day, so I went for another ride, less distance, but boy was it a hard interval workout.  After 4 days and 175+ miles.  I took off on a rainy Wednesday, and was back on the trainer on Thursday doing more intervals.  I tried to ride Friday but the fear of getting blown away by the wind had me turning back home.

And so brings the weekend.  Saturday started at 5:30 am as I took the 4 hour trip from Wheeling to Martinsburg to play in a roller hockey tournament with my brothers and friends.  Without the ability to skate due to poor blades, our first game was a wash, losing 7-0.  Once I got my skating situation figured out, the second game came with a 5-2 win.  Not so lucky in our third game, we lost 4-1, but held them close for the majority of the game.  Then came the playoffs, where my two goal effort came with not much help, in a 4-2 loss to knock us out of the tournament.
The next morning was again up early at 6:30 to get back to Fairchance PA for the ABRA training race.  I knew coming into it that I was going to practice riding the break, so I started getting nervous about the amount of pain I was about to endure.  I had no idea though what was about to occur.  With the help of EJ and Devin, I was able to get away with one other rider on lap 3 with another bridging 2 laps later.  I WAS IN THE BREAK FOR 12 OF THE 15 LAPS.  That's something that I have NEVER done before, so it was a first. While riding for a new team, I could not have done it without their control over the group behind, another first for me.  Their efforts were well awarded when I was able to come up with a big win for us to set the tone for the rest of the season.
As I sit on my bed eating my strawberry yogurt and drinking my chocolate milk writing about this week I had, I have think to use this new found confidence and motivation, from all the fun I had riding on the bike, to carry me through the rest of the season.  Whether it be trying to qualify for nationals or riding strong for my team this coming summer, any productivity will have been sparked by the DPT training camp and hopefully it will show.  I'm just glad to be apart of it.