June 3, 2009

MT Hood Cycling Classic

It is race time again. I can feel it.
My stomach is restless.
My legs are aching.
My mind is wandering.

The Mt. Hood Cycling Classic starts for me on Friday with an 18.5 mile time trail, up and over the Rowena Loops from the Dallas to Hood River.

Will my wheels be ready, do I have the right gearing, have I trained properly? Am I resting enough, am I tapering too much?

Saturday holds a 71 mile road race around Mt. Hood, complete with 8,500 feet of climbing and a huge uphill finish at Mt Hood Meadows.

I look at the Racer List. Many names I recognize, more I do not. Women are coming from Idaho, British Columbia, California, Washington. Some race for the Kristin Armstrong Development Team, one girl is only 15. I will be the only Woman wearing the Sunnyside Kit.

Did I do enough intervals, hill repeats, squats? Has my descending improved? And what about my cornering? Will I get dropped on the downhill again?

I will have the answers to these questions come Sunday, when we line up for the Crit; a technical course with an uphill, 180 degree corner.

Why am I nervous? There is nothing more I can do. At this point in the game, the training is over.

Being nervous doesn't make you faster or stronger or more aero. It only keeps you from sleeping well at night.

So, my goal is to not be nervous, but instead be strong; race hard, be smart, stay safe, and above all, have fun.