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Showing posts from September, 2013

Ignorance

I just didn't know what bronchitis would do to me.

I do now... or at least I think I do.

ArcticCross race #3 was worse than #2. It was a course that actually favored the roadies, and although I didn't get a call-up, I was in good position after the start. Then I noticed I couldn't push myself. My heart rate was stuck just below lactic threshold, where it usually hovers just below my max. My legs felt like they could go harder, but nothing else did. Right before the start/finish, another rider stuck his pedal in my spokes, and I climbed off. No damage was done and I stayed upright, but my heart wasn't in it. Five minutes, thirty-odd seconds of racing and I was done.

Shortly thereafter the hacking cough started. I guess a 38F ambient temperature wasn't what the doctor ordered.

The week's workouts had pointed towards recovery, with steadily improving power, but that wasn't on display Saturday. When I got home, I got on the trainer for an hour in a warm garage and …

Halfway.

I knew I wasn't back yet. My body still ached from coughing, and my lungs had the capacity of a thimble. The record number of rainy days had left the course soaked, which only deepened the soreness I felt as soon as I pulled up. I should have packed it in right there.

But darn it, this is ArcticCross!!!

After missing the first race, I wanted to give it a shot and see what I had in the tank. I had already written off the season to one of participation rather than of competition, but that didn't mean I wasn't aching to line up and race.

This was a new course, and while it was run mostly on soggy grass, there was a road section, short run-ups, technical turns, barriers... and oh yeah... the bog. Shin-deep organic mud that coated everything as you ran through it. I gained more than one position by passing people that had fallen into the goop.

The start was a junk show for me, as without a call-up I was relegated to the middle of the pack. Once we started, a short technical turn b…

The Hits Just Keep on Coming...

I knew something was wrong Wednesday night as soon as I got on the bike for the 'cross clinic. I kinda figured it was due to my ongoing sinus infection and the wet conditions, but I was kinda surprised just how far I was off form. While others made multiple attempts at various course features, I was only good for one or two before my body started to warn me that I was pushing my luck. Since this was only a clinic, I decided to dial it back and save myself for the ArcticCross race on Saturday.

That night I was doubled over with coughing fits, to the point that I had lost the ability to speak by the next day. I took the day off to try to recover, but by Friday it was obvious this wasn't just a sinus infection. Since the wife had been diagnosed the day before with bronchitis, the doctor only confirmed what I already knew...

I wasn't racing Saturday.

I spent Friday night downing whatever the doctor prescribed, and slept with two cough drops in my cheeks like a chipmunk. It worked…

Bug

A couple months ago my family welcomed two foster children into our lives. Aged 1 (girl) and 3 (boy), they created havoc (as toddlers generally do), which proved to be too much for us, as it caused undue stress on my pregnant wife. Rather than endanger her health and that of our son, we made the hard choice to pass them on to another, very caring family.

I especially had a rough time saying goodbye to the little girl, that I nicknamed Bug. That could be short for Love Bug or Stink Bug, and that varied from minute to minute. At first she didn't want anything to do with me, but eventually she warmed up to me and became a Daddy's girl. Or Daddy's Bug. Or whatever. Picking her up from daycare and seeing her crooked, drooling smile when she saw me was the highlight of my day. I was lucky to be a part of her life for a short time.

Now that they've gone, I keep finding reminders of them around the house. A pink sock here, a drool-stained bib there, a toy you step on in the midd…