Last update in October…sheesh. Must have been that school thing taking up some time. With the Olympics looming and entering my 9th year as a professional bike racer, it was great to ensure some mental and physical variety in the program this winter with the addition of an anatomy course and staying home to log lots of ski miles. For me focus tends to lead to focus and I always feel like I perform well when I am engaged in learning on multiple fronts.
Bike racing and travelling is back in full focus and swing now though. The World cup opener in Australia went fairly smoothly despite surgery on my thumb 2 weeks prior. A bone break in late February wouldn’t unionize so pins were inserted to stabilize the break. My thumb is still ridiculously fat looking but grip strength was not impacted and riding carried on pretty much as normal thanks to Di2 shifting enabling a left hand set up. The only way my thumb held me back was by limiting the skills work and bike play I did in my world cup preparation leaving me feeling a little off form on features but strong in general as I raced to 4th position.
Back home after Australia I felt like I got my first good mtb training block in in a while. Getting out on dirt everyday on my home trails without feeling protective of an injury had me feeling sharp. Joining my teammate Maghalie for some skills training with Shaums March (March North West) had me feeling progression again. Training with Shaums was one of those “what if?” experiences. What if I had been doing skills work with him 5 years ago…where could my riding be now? How can I best incorporate his feedback into rapid progression this summer?
Every time you work with a good coach you feel like you get some great nuggets of info that help you progress, it is consistently working with those pieces and checking back in on your progress that leads to big improvements. I have been super fortunate with the coaches I have had to work with in my career. My coach Dan always creating sound and challenging programs and my husband Keith being the second set of eyes helping in the daily training environment and skill progression. Adding Shaums’ Gravity racing background to the mix was the perfect addition.
And now I sit at a coffee shop in Germany killing a recovery day, waiting for World Cup #2 in Albstadt Germany this Sunday. Having met Canada’s automatic selection Criteria for Rio already, and with Canada looking secure for 2 positions for our women, I get to enter the final selection event this weekend feeling relaxed but still anxious to go out there and give it my best. With 89 ambitious women lining up and dreams on the line you are sure to see some epic battles! I feel like the women’s field is stronger than it has ever been. Wishing everyone the best of luck as I take a moment to appreciate this awesome journey we are all on. The opportunity to fight for an Olympic spot, to race to be the best in the world at what we do, what we love, is pretty sweet.