Thank you Hannah Clarke

Thank you Hannah Clarke

Friday, July 12, 2013

Summertime update!

Summer 2013 has been an eventful and fun time, I've pushed myself to new challenges in more ways than just racing. In terms of races, I have had a great time camping out on the courses with my friends for the weekend (both at the Ontario Cup (broke my bike this weekend) and at the 24 hour race (which my team won)). Most recently I was pitted against extreme fatigue to finish a 60 km mountain bike marathon race in which I was stung by wasps twice on the shoulder, once on the lip, once just below my eye. This particular race was the breaking point for me it seemed as I had been working and riding and not sleeping well for the preceding weeks, I didn't know how I could keep my pedals turning. Another detail that compounded the issue was my losing a bottle on the second lap in 34 degree weather. I always say that I would rather finish dead last than not finish a race, and this one was pushing me hard, in the end, the real reason that I was able to finish the race is because I thought of all the support that I get. What I really mean by this is that every time that I'm in a tough place in a race, or thinking of whether to train or not in the rain, or whatever else may it be, I think of my blog, and the people that read this and send me messages. It shows a lot of support that you are just looking at this right now, and some of the private messages that I have gotten really mean a lot to me.

Looking confident on the start line
Not the same look on my face after the race

This brings me to the other bit that I alluded to above - I've been busy off the race course as well. Thursdays I spend riding with some really talented kids from the Collingwood area at Duntroon Highlands (which is also an Ontario Cup course). These guys rock! Thanks to Jen and Noelle for getting this program going and letting me tag along - I seriously enjoy coming and helping the kids to work on their bike skills. We practice different types obstacles and abilities, it is really inspiring to watch these kids try things that frighten them and watching them overcome these obstacles reminds me really what it's all about.

Lastly, the real way I've pushed myself out of my comfort zone recently is by taking some advice that was given to me - to do motivational speaking in some capacity. I went to a highschool in Vaughn and was incredibly well received by both the students and the teachers, while I made did two fifty minute presentations to over a hundred students on cycling, perseverance, and goal setting. I look forward to seeing where this goes in the future.

This weekend and the coming week are the two biggest races that I've got planned for the season; Canada Cup up in Sudbury, ON and Nationals at Hardwood Hills (north of Orillia). I am comfortable on the Canada Cup course in Sudbury, and have a great handle on most of the nationals course (though I've got some work to do still). Wish me luck!

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