Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Back in the (Cyclocross) Saddle Again

I'm like a born-again Christian, except mine is a religion of MUD and PAIN commonly known as cyclocross. All in all, Loon Mountain isn't a bad place to get re-initiated. This past weekend at the Nor'easter, the trees were dressed in their early-fall colors, the weather was a breezy 75 degrees and the course was a crazy mix of natural barriers, hills and... um... HILLS. The women's Cat 3/4 race had 22 starters, a perfect size for an anxious competitor on her mountain bike. Ahem -- a temporary solution, as the cyclocross bike of my dreams is in gestation, but it turned out not to be entirely a disadvantage.

I felt comfortable riding this challenging course on a bike I knew and I was actually catching and passing people through the tricky off-camber corners. I am happy to report that in my first off-road race in 6 years AND on a sub-par machine, I actually finished in the TOP TEN of the Cat 4 women. We won't mention that there were only fourteen Cat 4's in all, but STILL... just happy to finish. Speaking of finishing, major props to George H., coming across the line just outside of the top 10 in a field size of 33. He rocked it and looked good doing so!

In the end, though, I have a long way to go. It was the HILLS that rose up to defeat me. Or, more precisely, it was my lack of any sort of athletic training. If I can get in 5 hrs of saddle time, I'm having a great week. So let's call this an experiment in racing-into-shape, minus the (often touted, and note the quotations) "base miles." Right. So you mean the power of positive thinking isn't enough?

Thanks a lot to you all for getting me pumped up to race again. I am really happy to have met all of you and am proud to be a Flying Penguin!!!


  1. Glad you are back to racing... and racing with us :) Sounds like you had a good start to CX. hope to race with you some weekend soon.

  2. You can add that you had a baby in your arms within 5 minutes of the start and then again 5 minutes after finishing. Great post!