Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Playing about and healing

After the Wee McGregor I was feeling rather spent, very satisfied and really sore. My elbow didn’t like the 22km bumpy descent and was absolute agony after the race. My chest/shoulders/neck (csn) injury, which just keeps persisting, wasn’t much better. My physio ordered me off the bike and I begrudgingly complied. After a few rest days both elbow and csn had settled down to being annoying rather than horribly painful and I felt happy enough with them to head out to the Vulcaniser open day.

The Vulcaniser in North Canterbury is a loop of gorgeous hand sculpted singletrack made up of evilly steep climbs and twisty fun descents. I had entered the Vulcaniser race which was cancelled because of rain so this ride day would let me know what I missed out on. And what I missed out on was pain. I am not fit enough to race that course, and I don’t think I’ll ever be unless I can drop 15 to 20kgs (which I have no plans to do in the near or distant future). It was fun, but I did a lot of pushing up some of the steeper bits. The descents were great and I rode all of them except the one rooty steep bit in the “Boars Nest”. Unfortunately my hubby had mechanical issues which meant only doing one lap, but to be honest it was so cold that I was happy to leave. Now I know that I’m destined to marshal at the Vulcaniser, not race it.

Following that I did some more resting of my injuries, with just some sifty road rides thrown in to keep my fitness from completely disappearing. With the return of my regular physio and his evil fingers of pain and neck/back cracking torture I was soon back in the forest and checking out how the Bottlelake trails are riding after all the logging that has gone on. The loops are all joined up again and most of the track is pretty sweet. There are a few nasty little sandy bits, but all in all it’s looking mint for when night racing starts up again. Unfortunately I learnt that a couple of laps on the singlespeed straight after painful physio treatment makes for feeling pretty crap so that was that for riding for another few days.

Of course I’ve also been playing on my fantastic BMX. I’ve ridden at both North Avon and Hornby tracks and while both are really fun I think I like North Avon’s better. This is unfortunate given it is on the other side of town, while the Hornby track is just up the road. Oh well, I’ll just have to get better at the Hornby track. I’m starting to get a feel for the bike and can do very small manuals. I spent an hour on Easter Monday practising wheelies and lifting my back wheel in the back garden and have improved a tiny amount. My arms are telling me what hard work that was. I’m looking forward to the time in the very distant future when I can roll along the footpath on my back wheel and do bunny hops over the curb.

I took a friend for a ride up Rapaki on Monday, which I thought might be tough given I’d done a couple of hours around the forest on Sunday but I was surprised how well it went. It’s the first time I’ve been up Rapaki since my tour and my legs just ate the hill up. It helped that it was the first time my friend had been up Rapaki and I got to just cruise along, but I was still surprised at the gear I maintained and how fresh I felt at the top. I can’t wait to hammer it up there soon and try and get a new personal best.

In the final bit of news I’m off to Hanmer this weekend to do a 4hr solo race. I’m very excited about it, and not just because of the racing, which I’m aiming to do in a more laid back fashion. Heaps of my great friends are coming up to race and support too so it’s going to be a fantastic weekend away. I’m looking forward to seeing how many laps I can do in my 4 hours without blowing up, but I’m mainly looking forward to hanging out with loads and loads of cool people. Bring on Friday!

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