Rule #1: Have Fun.
Sometimes Rule #1 evolves.
It’s important to have the flexibility and the mindset to be accepting of whatever Rule#1 transforms itself into.
Sometimes Rule#1 is: Don’t blow up your leg.
And then, recognizing we have the power to be happy with that. And accepting, that we have to.
That certainly can be a tough one for athlete’s to come to terms with; the Athlete’s I coach, as well as myself.
I usually can do _____ and now I can only do ______.
We have to remember in order to do ______ later, we have to do ______ now.
And accept it.
So where have I been?
On November 12th I won my Age Group in Palo Duro Canyon. I was a little disappointed that it was a 4 hour race, even for me. With the fastest pros coming in in 2:30. Hell, that’s practically a XC race. I generally expect a little bit longer of a Marathon Mountain Bike Race; however, Palo Duro Canyon never disappoints, and I was overwhelmed with utter joy that Comanche in it’s entirety, was included. We if could have just ridden another 10 miles. Or done 2 full laps, with Full Comanche’s each lap.
One of my favorite things about Palo Duro is that it is centrally located for all my riding buddies to migrate to: Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Oklahoma. And we generally come together for a pre-ride. It’s not so much a pre-ride, as most of us have ridden the course many times, as it is a time to stop and enjoy the beauty, and each other’s company.
And I generally have the honor to draft off someone who show’s up wearing the same outfit as me.
The Kordestani Team does a fantastic job, putting on a top notch event. Karie, the race director, and I took a trip down memory lane. How many times I have been present at that race. How the 1st time she met me my jaw was broken. And apparently wired shut. Yes, I ‘raced’ with my jaw wired shut…I’m sure Rule#1 then, was; Take No Chances.
I have been to all but two races since it’s inception. I have traveled from Dallas, New Mexico, and Minnesota to do that race. I have missed 2 on account of weather keeping me from potentially arriving safely.
So the last year and a half the veins on the back of right leg have gotten progressively worse. The pain growing gradually over time. At first, I could elevate my legs, and that would alleviate the pain. And eventually it got to the point, where I had to elevate my legs, and put on my Rx compression mmHg socks before I even got out of bed.
I went to see the vein doctor to have the vein Dx. I already knew the diagnosis. And what could potentially be the treatment.
With the ultra-sound showing that both my right and left legs were having trouble with venous return. The Tx being injecting the left leg only (the leg with pain) with a mild chemical (that we tested to make sure I wouldn’t have an allergic reaction to) to dissolve the vein from mid thigh, to the base of the leg, totaling 4 to 5 injections.
The truth be known, the pain got to be so great, even in lieu of compression and elevation, that I began rubbing CBD oil on the back of the knee, and the thigh.
So a few weeks pass, and it’s time to go in to have the vein treated. The vein has improved, and only a small area below the knee needs to be treated. And the DR, asks me how long the cyst has been behind my knee. He did not see the cyst during the 1st ultrasound. It had been there a very long time. I think, that it is there because of the untreated hole in my petellar tendon I sustained while riding in the ’90’s. That it may even be a bit of debris trying to work it’s way out.
The DR didn’t know what to do with me. I didn’t make the connection at the time of the office visit between the CBD oil, and the improvement in venous return in the leg. If I had, I would have declined all services with a follow up in 3 to 4 weeks. I had not treated the medial aspect of the gastrocnemius with the CBD so the DR decided he would use two injections on the one vein that still appeared to be having trouble. With a follow up in 3 weeks.
Now in hindsight, I will never have a procedure done when the monkeys are scheduled to be with their Dad, I needed to be on the bike, for long sustained efforts. I learned. I chose this time because of other races that I wanted to be on my calendar for 2017.
So I was a good girl, and followed Rule #1, don’t blow up your leg. I wore my compression, my body adjusted, I continued to apply the CBD oil, primarily to the back of the knee where the cyst was.
The cysts appears to be getting smaller.
The follow up revealed that none of the original varicose veins are varicose, measuring at 2mm. That there is some mild venous return near where the vein was treated, implying that the vein had not totally shut down, or parts of it had re-opened, and appeared to be somewhat normal in function.
I did not tell the DR I had applied CBD. Although, I probably should have mentioned it. Per my usual response upon initial Tx, I laughed it off as me being, ‘the anomaly’. Which those who know me….
So I have been fully cleared for exercise.
Which brings us to another rule: The Sick Rule
Don’t Exercise until You are 100%….And then, Wait Another Day.
It works. You’re supposed to follow it. I follow it.
Except, yes, there can be exceptions.
60 degree day,
followed by the return of Old Man Winter.
The Other Sick Rule: Never exercise with a fever (unless, it’s New Mexico Toughman)
I had no fever.
And I told the girls, I’m not supposed to ride, I am going to ride, and I might have a set back for a day or two after the ride.
To hit the warmth,
on my 3 week anniversary,
my 1st ride without compression,
before Old Man Winter returns…..
Yes, sometimes, rules can be bent. Please refer to Rule#1 and Evolution.
It was a glorious day. I decided to drive to Placitas, and get lost, to find myself.
I love that place. I don’t know the trails at all. That’s part of what makes it so beautiful. And the vistas.
Literally there is: red dirt, brown dirt, white dirt, yellow dirt, black dirt…every color of dirt a girl would ever want.
One can see White Mesa, Santa Fe, Jemez, Mount Taylor, riding nestled in the North End of the Sandias. There is everything from double track, to super technical, I probably need a gps tracker on me, trails.
I was out there for 2+ hours. I rode, all new trail, I got a little lost, due to time, and came back on the road, for safety.
I will go out there, and ride, and ride, and ride, and ride. Until I fall over in the parking lot and cry.
That is one thing that happens to be just about every time I ride since being back in New Mexico.
I’m out there, and I am so grateful, and full of Love.
This place is so magical. There’s a reason why they call it the Land of Enchantment.
Yes, there’s jokes about the name.
I can’t think of a better place, I would want to be entrapped.
Needless to say I’m a little behind in my training.
Not too much of a set back. This week total, I missed two half days of work.
Yes, I had to ride. Yes, I had scheduled the ride.
Next race 1.15.2017 El Paso Puzzler. The 1st time in years I am going to do it on gears. I actually can’t wait. Brings me to the next topic.
1 x 11
Don’t get me wrong. I love my 1 x 11.
In 2015 I raced Leadville 100 on the 1 x 11 for the 1st time.
I will never race Leadville 100 on my 1 x 11 again. I lost too much time on my specialties. What I am good at.
My boyfriend Scott is set up SS right now. And a couple weeks out from El Paso Puzzler last year in 2016 (not being fully where I wanted to be) I put a 20 on the back. I love that 20!
A couple of things have happened. I’m weak, and I am weak.
I do not have the 18 on the back of the SS. And I have no big ring (my personal favorite, more on this later)
So my Boyfriend Scott went in for a make over for the winter.
Of course, of course, I took it out for a farewell voyage, making sure I followed Rule#1 Don’t Blow Up your Leg (And by this time, Rule#1.5, have fun)
We are re-installing the 2 x 10 Quarq, and the stock wheels. That stock rear wheel weighs 4.5 Pounds.
So I was working with a one on one the other day and we were talking bikes, and 1 x 11 and he currently is on a 2 x 10. Of course, I told him how much I love my 1 x 11, how it’s good for so many things around here. And then, I asked him,
How many times do you slap your bike into the Big Ring when you’re in the foothills?
His response, All the time.
When you don’t have that big ring up front, you miss that cranking down hill. It becomes coasting.
So guess what? You lose it.
Well, I want it back. So I am taking it back.
For single speed this winter I am running a 33 x 18 on Frankenbike. Which is a 26 inch wheel base, fully rigid.
And My BF Scott, set up with it’s original 2 x 10 and heavy AF wheels.
Sounds like a match made in heaven doesn’t it?!?
I am planning on racing Northshore in Dallas on my birfday. And I will be running SS on that course, more than likely. So I have a couple of months to do that thing I do best, crank big gears. I cannot wait, I cannot lie. The extra weight in the back will help too. And I don’t need to worry about ruining my sweet Stan’s Gold race wheels in the snow, and mud.
Cause you know I am all about getting squirrelly!!
It’s going to be a great winter!
The Solstice is near, and we can rejoice for each day becoming longer!