Sunday, May 16, 2010

Races, Injuries, Recovery, Back in the Saddle

It’s been a while! With the spring weather coming around and training, work, travel to races, and now yard work, the BLOG kind of fell by the wayside. An injury finally made me slow down and gave me some time to reflect and write about the last couple weeks. I’d been pushing it pretty hard; a marathon, DawntilDusk, White Rim Trail, then picking up the intensity in my training, averaging 50 - 60 miles a week running, plus lots of riding to include hill repeats and high intensity group rides. After DawntilDusk I re-evaluated my race schedule and decided doing the Collegiate Peaks 50 mile run then the 12 Hours of Mesa Verde MTB race on back to back weekends was probably not a good idea and dropped Collegiate Peaks. My legs were getting very tired during and after runs, so I didn’t think I could competitively run 50 miles. So after White Rim I thought (even though I was tired from not having taken a break for several weeks) I could get one more hard week then an easy week before 12 hours of Mesa Verde. During that week I strained my IT Band and couldn’t run at all. It hurt while riding but was bearable. That definitely forced and easy week before Mesa Verde.

Mesa Verde was a blast. A great weekend with great company topped off with a fantastic race course. It was also the first mountain bike race for 2 time Leadville Trail 100 Run winner, Paul_DeWitt/.  He didn’t mess around either, signing up for the solo category. The course was a rough 16.4 mile loop that beat you up pretty good. No significant climbs, but lots of rollers and short power climbs. I prefer the long climbs myself. Lots of tight twisty single track. An incredibly fun course for 1 or 2 laps. An incredibly rough beat the crap out of you course at 12 hours. Anyway the race went well, I stayed steady throughout, and never felt like I needed to quit. Never had any “Oh man this sucks” moments. My IT band hurt fairly bad for the first four laps then the pain magically went away. I flatted on the 4th lap, just after I gave my Co2 cartridge to someone else that flatted. Luckily Kervin Quiones came by and threw me his. In the end I finished 3rd in the Geezer category with 7 laps in a little over 12 hours. Alan Keefe used a helmet cam on one of his laps of the course and got some cool video of the course. Check it out:

The rest of the week I forced to recover. I was exhausted and couldn’t run with the IT issue. Riding a bike seem to aggravate it also. So my only workouts this week were very easy rides to and from work on my road bike. Spent some time at one the best chiropractors in town, Randy Knoche at Springs Chiropratic and saw dramatic improvement after every visit. This injury actually had a lot of good positive aspects to it. I could sleep in every morning until 5:30 instead of the usual 4:00 since I didn’t workout. The extra sleep was great, I could get used to that. It also forced me to take the rest that I knew I needed and probably would not have taken. So I took it very easy this week and didn’t do anything on Saturday. I thought about how pathetic I am in that if I’m not running or riding, I don’t know what to do with myself. Roswitha found things for me to do though.

Today, my IT band is feeling totally healed. Went out on a good 70+ mile group road ride and had a blast. I felt great, the best & strongest I’ve felt in a while. The ride was incredible, we were like kids out playing, attacking each other on the climbs, randomly sprinting to road signs, and absolutely loving life. I’m back, batteries recharged, excited about training again, and looking forward to the next eight weeks of preparing for my hardest race of the year, the Breckenridge 100. It's good to back!

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