Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Brommelseik Race

This race was fantastic and if you missed it you can start kicking yourself now. Mitch, Greg, and the two Todd's ( Hecht and Holtman ) put on a fast, fun, well organized race. There were several volunteers around the course shouting encouragement which is always nice. I love this trail. Minus the horse poo. It was unfortunate for me that the race course ran opposite of how I normally ride it, so it was not real familiar to me until about lap 3. I was glad to be back on my bike after the 3 week hiatus. I did apologize to Connor since he was 100% and I was about 75%.

My gear choice was 32x19, in hindsight should have done 34x19. I think that might have helped me in the field portions, where the geared chicas smoked me. At times I felt like I was spinning my legs off. There were 6 women racing in marathon. That is the most I have seen. My goal was 6 laps. The heat was minor for me but major for others. I used a 50 oz. Camelback and only stopped once to fill it with ice. I used one 3 hour Sustained Energy bottle , but did not finish it.I did feel awful on my second lap when a fella asked me if I had a tube and I didnt. I set out on this race without a tube or a pump. Yes, on purpose. I felt confident that there was no way God would allow me to flat since I was trying to get my groove back . I saw many people cursed with flats, my husband had like 3. I also felt bad riding past him 2 times while he changed them. I wanted to ride for the 3 hours and just see where I was at. Did I lose any fitness over the last 3 weeks? It was also my first long ride with my new body armor. Besides looking like a Power Ranger it was quite comfortable. As long as I wear it I know Jim and my mom will feel better. ( I do too ) It was not planned that I would be lapped by the 2 geared queens, but it happened. I did not let it kill my spirit since I know Steph and Christine lapped some guys too. If this race was 6 hours longer I think I would have caught them...I do think I saw flames when they passed me. How did they get that fast? Truly amazing women. If I could keep up with them maybe I could learn something. I would gladly trade some endurance for some speed.

I did achieve my goal of 6 laps. I got to hang out with some awesome peeps and enjoy a delicious Pabst after so it was a good day. I am not a whiner but will admit my arm was sore afterwards. I hope to be 100% in a few weeks and will embrace the pain and make peace with it for now.

My next post will include a short story of the 5 day hospital stay and some gross pics of the injury. You have been warned , so you are on your own if you choose to look at them.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Gross Hospital Pics

I am not a fan of hospitals! They are full of sick people . I spent 5 days vegetating in a bed, watching TV, being stuck with needles,filled to the brim with Vancomyicin ( had 8 bags ), and chasing the morphine dragon. I got the pleasure of having a CT ScAN, MRI/MRA scans ( can you say clausterphobia?), X-RaYS , etc. They were nice enough to come to my room to perform the EKG (since everyone freaked when only my left pupil dilated HUGE ) The docs scared me in to thinking there were serious things wrong . I had surgery to clean out the debris left behind by the first doc. The day after was very painful since it had to be scrubbed, with a bristle brush, and then packed with gauze. Removing the gauze and repeating the scrubbing was not fun. Luckily I healed quickly and only had to endure that for about 1 week. I think Jim secretly liked watching me squirm and scream during the cleanings.

However,after climbing into those machines, getting poked ,xrayed, being hooked up to a heart monitor, and getting my eyes checked we find out nothing is wrong with me. There is also nothing wrong with my head, in case some of you were wondering. I have healed quite fast and wont even have a killer scar. I really wanted a gnarly one that people would ask about. I would just shrug and say " mountain biking", with a smile of course .
I am back riding again and hope there are no more falls, spills, endows, or hospital visits. I am very thankful I was not alone, since Jim spent 5 days of vaca beside my bed. Thanks Babe.

Monday, June 21, 2010


Well, kind of. Jim woke me this morning whispering sweet somethings in my ear. He said "why dont you hop on the trainer today". Awesome. My arm has healed to the point that sweat cant get inside so, its safe for me to resume my life. I was able to fit in just over an hour on the trainer this morn and it felt wonderful to get my legs going again. I am feeling a little like the Pillsbury Dough Boy, but I really didnt notice if I lost any fitness over the last 2 weeks of inactivity. I hope to get some trail time later this week and would like to do the Brommelsiek Challenge this weekend. Which category is still up in the air. After watching the Luau yesterday I am ready so ready to ride. Its sucks to be on the sidelines. Matt James put on a helluva a race. Too bad He couldnt control the weather.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Three Years Ago....

today I went on my first mountain bike ride , ever, with the St. Charles Parks Dept. They provide beginner introduction rides once a month at one of their parks. GORC also plays a huge role and several GORCsters show up for these rides. I was intrigued by biking on the trails, since I had only hiked them. I had not been on a bike in at least 20 years and I wanted to be able to ride with my hubby, since he had a shit eating grin on his face every time he returned from a ride. Long story short, about 1.5 miles in I launched myself down a 10 ft. cliff and ended up in the ER. Ironically, the same ER I found myself in a couple of weeks ago. Also ironic, is the fact I hurt the same arm/elbow. I was very frustrated that I would not be able to get a" do over" until late Oct. I learned the most important " rule " of biking that day. "Dont look where you dont want to go". Thanks Craig for all your advice and helping me out of the ditch. It was nice to have the crash site affectionately named " Wendy's Wading Pool " , and that spot has since been rerouted.

I cant wait to get back on my bike. My arm is healing very quickly. I hope to be riding next week. That is, if my mom doesnt sell my bike . And if Jim lets me. I really wanted to do The LUAU , this weekend. Maybe TTM will be there for morale support. Or just to watch who "sandbags". Thanks to STLbiking for providing such an entertaining thread while I am mending.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Berryman Duathlon Report

The race started like any other. I was excited and nervous to be racing against Carrie Sona, Karen H and Emily - Carrie and I chose to run first - It was hot and muggy already at 7AM. About 1 mile in on the first bike lap, my back tire slid out - I fell - I picked up my bike with my right hand and went to brush off my left arm. Blood quirted from my elbow/forearm. Immediately dropped Connor and used my brand new bike glove to stop the bleeding. I screamed for Jim who was just ahead. He had his iPod on - he did not hear me. Later, he said he thought he heard something, but though it was me enjoying a downhill. I hiked my bike back the mile. I vaguely remember growling at the person who took my bike from me. A 6-hour racer, Dave, the voice of reason, was there to rinse my arm and talk me into going to the ER in Potosi. Gabrielle R was kind enough to give me a lift in Robs car.

Dr. Christmas numbed me, kind of cleaned me, put in 10 stitches and then informed me I could get back on my bike - YAHOO! - On the drive back I reformulated my race plan - I only lost 2 hours - I still have a chance - Gabby please Drive faster! I'll only have 40 minutes of the numbing juice left when I get back.

Mile 6 was extremely painful - I've never had stitches and due to their placement, it was impossible to lift my front wheel. The newly added water bars - about 20 - were a challenge. I can do this still - I finished the 12 mile ride and changed shoes for the run. By now my arm was sweaty and stinging. I didn't need my arm to run right?! WRONG - I completed the 4.5 mile run to find Jim relaxing - He was done. Upon seeing me trying to put on my bike shoes he told me he took me out of the race. He knows Im not a quitter, so he quit for me. -Thanks Babe-

I do not expect anyone to understand why I got back on my bike. Mentally I thought I would be okay. I thought I could suck it up and just keep going. Physically, I could not. I do not regret it. Whenever I get hurt its difficult for me to feel comfortable again. I tend to ride scared and overly cautious. Now when I get the green light I think I will be okay. Just don't make fun of my bubble wrap.

Jim unwrapped my arm and asked Nurse Karen, also out of the race, to look at my injury - She promptly went into nurse mode and grabbed her supplies. She picked out more rocks-n-such and flushed my wound while I screamed in her ear.
Apparently Dr. Christmas missed the hole in my elbow and she applied some butterflies hoping they would hold. Thank you Karen - I hope your foot heals.

Watching the other racers was hard. I did get to drink beer and eat some great grilled foods prepared by Jason. The winner of the mens 12 hour did 6 laps!! A new record. This guy was so fast he even lapped the second place fella. Emily won the 12 hour with 4 laps, Carrie was not far behind.

Upon seeing my regular doctor on Monday- he called the ER and let them know I would be there shortly. My arm was swollen and a scary red color. Jim left work early - and spent the next 5 days by my hospital bed - but that's another story.

Currently, my arm is in a sling and I'm incapable of typing, so my dish-washing, babysitting, lawn-mowing, laundry-doing son is typing for me. He's just great :-)

Thursday, June 3, 2010


As many of you already know... My 4 year old is riding a bike with pedals now and NO training wheels. She started her biking on the front of my bike, in a saddle- type seat , when she was about 18 months old. She received a Strider bike for Christmas in 2008 and the rest is history. I am so proud of her. She has discovered a new freedom now and wants to ride everyday, all day. She will do and say whatever she needs to in order to ride. She is a lot like US huh? I will admit to being very difficult to be around if I dont get to ride.

We ended up at Council Bluff for the 3rd weekend in a row thanks to the generosity of Mitch the Mashor, who made his campsite available to us since he was not able to use it the entire weekend. Jim and I both got to do a HOT lap, which was because of the heat not our speed. Sydney got to ride as much as she could handle and even got to do some in the dark. On Sun. eve I tucked her in to the tent with her legs propped up on pillows. Yeah, how many 4 year olds do you know that get to ride that much?? I guess we will have to limit her riding at some point, but how???

Along with riding we got to hike and spend time in our canoe. I felt much better about the lake this time. On Mon. we put the chainsaw in the canoe and circled the lake. Jim was able to remove several trees this way. A couple of bikers shouted where the trees were which made it easier. Who would have thought??

There were some rockstars at CB this weekend too. Prepare to be jealous... The Matt James, and his wife Liz, Drewby, and The Professor and his wife Maggie were in attendance. It was great to sit and visit and sponge some tips from them. While Maggie played rocks with Syd I was able to relax. A great deal of my day was spent running behind Syd while she rode. I will need to get faster.

The Duathlon is finally here and its time to get packing. I am as ready as I will ever be. Mr Nico Toscani has been very gracious and offered Jim a bike so he will be able to compete. My goal is to complete 5 laps . Here's the problem, I will have to start my 5th lap by 5pm. That means I will need to complete roughly 18 miles of running and 50 miles of biking in less than 10 hours. I told someone this week " ANYTHING is possible. You have to believe and fight like hell to make it happen." Hmmmm. I guess that statement now applies to me. Hopefully, it wont rain or reach 91 as the forecast shows.

If you have nothing to do and nowhere to go this weekend, I suggest you come to Berryman and volunteer for this race. Jason gives you a 50% off certificate to any Bonkhard Race and he will also feed you. I promise you will have fun. And YES, there will be BEER. Jason is also doing race day signups if you want to get in on it. Hope to see you there