A lot has happened since Feb 2nd (the latest update). I'm still on the road doing some warm weather training. This month I'm in Tucson, AZ with a few teammates to train in the desert sun. TAJ and I set up base camp in the Crosslands extended stay motel in central Tucson. My room smells like a saloon- booze, smoke, feet, and old people. The air freshener/odor neutralizer is working over time with little success. In the last week it's been significantly eaten away, which I like to think means it's working at killing the odor and not getting it's little butt kicked by a wanna be saloon.
The Olympics have also started, and are coming to an end today. It's been really fun to watch the Games every night even though I started knowing nearly nothing about the winter sports. However, thanks to the wonders of television and the nbc commentators, I now feel that I'm an expert. (More on this later.)
Training was going very well, and I had a good early season showing at Valley of the Sun. The warm weather made it really fun to ride a bike- nothing was better. Then, last week I had the brilliant idea to enter a master's 30/40+ field at a local crit. This is the race for the fast old(er) guys, and supposedly is one of the safest fields of the day. (You may be wondering how I, a 21 year old girl got into a men's 30+ race. Well, ask and you shall receive.) Dave (Clark's pilot) was also racing the 30+ which I was excited about- he would make it fast, keep things interesting, and all I had to do was follow in the group. The race started, my legs felt great, closed a few gaps, followed a lot of wheels, and the next thing I remember is laying in the street. My first crash in a race! (It's a pretty good record since I've been doing this for several years now). Whacked my head, skinned knees and elbows- good thing one's fake, it saved me some tegaderm- scuffed my new shoes and tore my favorite knee warmers! Apparently I informed everyone of this fact at least 12 times with the same surprise and disappointment in my voice.
The next day I flew out to San Diego for the US Paralympic Ambassador Program's training session. As one of the less experienced speakers in the group, I learned a lot of skills and strategies for improving my speaking abilities, and how to tell my story. It was a lot of fun to hang out with the other athletes, and to hear their stories. Getting tips from people that speak for a living was really beneficial. I'm excited to test them out in the next few weeks.
Next up on the schedule is the Tucson Bicycle Classic (TBC) March 12-14. This will be the third time racing TBC. As a stage race it's a little more challenging than a one day race. You have to keep track of people from the previous days of racing, time gaps, time bonuses, who's on what team, and everything you'd think about in a one day race.
For real, I will post more often.