GS CIAO Team Camp!

day one ride

Day 1. Just an easy couple hours out on the town showing off the pink. I missed out on most of Day 1’s activities since I was at work writing about bike riding.

skratch labsThe team checking out Skratch Labs’ lab. Note the key secret ingredient on the 1Left to right: George, Robin, Chris, The Sheriff, one meetingTeam meeting lead by Nick and Chris: topics included packing rain bags in the team car, appropriate behavior at a host family’s house, and how to politely hit on a host family’s college-aged daughter.podium lookout ttDay 2. Lookout Mountain Hill Climb TT. Burleigh and Chris putting pink on top for the first time of the foodPost-ride fried rice, a la team chef Faith.robin day 2 ride We set out for three more hours after the early morning TT. day 3 breakfastDay 3. Breakfast at Chris’.  day 3 leadout puzzleLeadout tactics demonstration with puzzle pieces. day 3 leadoutI’m not sure what Nick was talking about. An actual leadout feels nothing like building a puzzle. That demonstration was lost on me restingResting back at Chris’ before the afternoon crit and feeling like shit. To myself: “You know that sick, congested feeling you’ve had for the past two days Kennett? Yeah that wasn’t just in your head you idiot. Maybe you shouldn’t have ridden six hours yesterday.” Obviously I had a feline for maximum healing powers but it wasn’t enough.George CritI started the Ordigger crit that warm, summer-like afternoon but pulled out after half an hour. As you can see from the following photos, the team didn’t suffer too badly from my absence.Robin crit

Josh crit

robin winning

podium critRobin: 1st and George 2nd. Not pictured: Chris in 4th, Michael in 7th, and Josh in 9th. day 4Day 4: the team went out for more riding and some motorpacing. I, on the other hand, slept for half a day and said a few prayers that I might get over the sickness as soon as god damn possible, which, you know what? I think I 4 moto

Depression and Bad Weather

Despite all the good news in my last blog post, life has been difficult lately. Actually an even more accurate word would be “shitty.” Really god damn shitty.

Adelaide and I go though a few happy days without any hitches. The hours at the office fly by, workouts get completed, we go to bed early with happy thoughts and good dreams. Those days never stack up, for bad news and a quick spiral downwards is always around the next bend.

Whether it’s a nagging bill collector, Adelaide coming to terms with the fact that her FTP is half of what it used to be (I’m almost in the same boat), an email from her attorney, information about the approaching trial, the van breaking down, or just a minor inconvenience like three weeks of non-stop blizzards in what has been the 2nd heaviest February snow fall in Colorado history, there’s always something to trigger an emotional storm.

Our spirits are egg-shell fragile. We’re both just hanging on by a thread. We’ve transitioned between post-crash recovery mode to regular life without a clear break, when in reality there’s still recovering to do, or at least a deserved month “off.” But as two productive members of society, capitalism can’t wait. So neither can we.

Our lives are sadly different than they were six months ago before the crash. We rely on a car to get around, which is a huge adjustment and one that we’re slowly weaning ourselves from. I hate cars and I absolutely hate having to use one on a daily basis. It’s ironic that a car (driver) put us in this position. Anyways, workouts are an hour long instead of five, our short term goals are constantly changing, the energy required to get through a single day is what could have previously powered us through an entire week, tiny errands like going to the post office or grocery store aren’t just delayed, a lot of the time they don’t even happen.

I’m in a better mindset than I was four months ago, which isn’t saying a lot because four months ago I was ready to either break down and cry in bed or rip throats open at the slightest discourtesy. But now, even with the crash well behind us, each week’s gains are less. Like halving every step you take, you’ll never reach your destination. It’s math.

A huge portion of my happiness obviously comes from my athletic endeavors. And in that regard, I’m doing terrible. Absolutely the worst I’ve been since I began racing at the national level. After this last bout of snow, the form I had back in early February has receded to October fitness. Despite using what little emotional energy I had to sit on the trainer the past couple weeks, pumping out intervals at 70 watts less than what I’d like, I seem to have gotten slower. There are four weeks till Redlands, where my goals will be to fetch bottles and not DNF.

My main goals of the season now come in the month of June: Philly, North Star, and Nationals. The positive is that there’s still plenty of time to get fit for these at least. It’s just a matter of forcing a smile and finding motivation to last through the next couple months of shitty legs and existing as pack fodder. I’ve done my share of that so I think I’ll be able to manage just fine.

I’m aware that things can always get a lot worse, and in the grand scheme of things, my life is still a lot better and easier than most. Knowing that doesn’t help a damn thing so don’t remind me of it.

A few good news to look forward to:

The guy who hit Adelaide, Russell Rosh, had his court hearing yesterday and plead guilty. He will be sentenced in the coming weeks, so we can finally move past that all that. The piece of shit dragged his feet all along the way, making things difficult and prolonging the ordeal. I will be glad to be done with him.

The even happier news is the coming together of the team. GS CIAO bikes, kits, and other goodies are arriving by the box load. The kits are hot. And let me tell you what, they feel a whole lot better than five-year-old Hagens Berman bibs and look a LOT better than torn up Firefighters Cycling stuff. I’ll have a new blog post and pics of this coming weekend’s Boulder-based mini team camp we’re doing. We’ll be racing some local events, eating team dinners, and putting in big miles.

The best news of all? The sun’s out.