Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Road Provincials

I had a great day at the provincial road race last Sunday, taking place just outside Waterloo. I enjoyed the course quite a bit. Lots of rolling hills, but nothing long or steep enough to be selective. The wind was minimal also, so it was an easy course to just hang in the pack.

Half way through the first lap a rider went clear, and I cruised off the front of the slow moving pack to join him. We built a little gap without working too hard, and then were joined by a Garneau rider, Evan Mundy after a lap. We got 1:15 up on the pack, only to be almost caught on the finish stretch, and then proceeded to rebuild the gap to 1:20 as the chasers slowed. We went along nice and steady, hoping a rider or 2 would come up and help us out. At the end of lap 3, Ivey came up to us, but being a big threat, the pack was right there chasing hard. The fun was over.

I sat in for a while, watching the counter attack go, and be caught. Then another one go and and be chased down. Then I started to follow some, which went no where. Mid race the winning break went clear, and I missed out. There wasn't too much interest in chasing and the pace slowed down to a crawl as no teams got organized. Some big surges strung us out and almost caused a split starting the last lap, but we slowed again just after keeping it all together.

It would be a sprint for 4th now, or second for U23. Came into the sprint in a perfect spot, went strong the first half of the climb, right at the front, then died about 20m from the line, and lost 5-10 spots. Uphill sprints are tough after 145km of racing!

Hope to race this course again, seemed to suit me well.
Thanks ma and pa for the feeding and driving!

Tomorrow is 5th 12mile race, then Sunday is the Canal days MTB race. Gonna be a fun weekend!


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Knee update

Since Buckwallow, my knee has improved a lot, but the sharp pains still come and go.

Anything serious has been ruled out by multiple tests, leaving plica syndrome the only real possibility. The plica is a remnant of the fetal stage of development, from when the knee was divided into three compartments. Once irritated (multiple MTB crashes) it can catch on the femur, or be pinched between the femur and patella (kneecap). The catch/release causes the patella to pop every time I bend my knee, when its acting up. This is not always painful, but if I move it the wrong way it kills.

It has been affecting my sleeps as my knee locks up from not being moved, and when it does bend, the first few times can be extremely painful.

So what have I been doing to fix this?
All I can really do is keep the surrounding muscles as loose as possible, and ice it often. Heat seems to help also, especially just prior to riding. My chiropractor has been providing some relief with micro-current, which blocks pain, and speeds up healing by clearing inflammation. It's no bs, I can really feel improvements. Only problem is its temporary. She has also been keeping it loose for me and working on my spine a little when there's time.

This pain has caused me to reduce my training a little, allowing more beach trips, which is a fair trade I guess. I should be well rested for road provincials this weekend though!

On today's ride my knee was great, yesterday I just wanted to get home. What will tomorrow bring? It will be hot, that's for sure, and I bet Le Tour will be an exciting one!

All for now

Monday, July 11, 2011


The Buckwallow o-cup once again made for a great weekend up in Muskoka.

I was up there on Tuesday, with Schmidt along for the ride and Henri already there to meet for some laps. We got 6 in, with no issues other than some slow leaks for myself and Schmidt, in our rear tires. Oh, and I bent up my front rim jumping of a roller and landing funny on flat ground. Didn't wreck it, but it was bad enough that it needed to be replaced, with a lighter rim, a podium MMX. Thanks Derek @ Liberty! for doing that last min for me.

The course was really nice, very similar to last year, maybe tougher with West D'nile in it. That trail was supper tough, almost all on rock, and uphill most of the way. some tricky lines in there that made a dab-free run difficult. I got my lines down, but would still mess up the steep uphill rock now and then.

On Thursday I did a tough interval workout, feeling good and finishing strong. Pushing the big watts must have done some damage to my right knee, which was injured before Albion. Friday it was its worst yet, every pedal stroke on my way to work caused a sharp stab like pain as I came over then top. I was a bit worried about the race, but tried to forget about it as I knew that the race adrenalin would numb it come Sunday.

Headed back up to pre-ride again Saturday, after sitting in some awful traffic for hours. Made it up around 1:30, then hit the course for 3 laps. Knee was poopy, and all was was thinking about. sucked up a lot of pain and enjoyed the riding the best I could getting lines dialed. The evening after was spent swimming and chilling by the fire, basically just soaking in the cottage life with the Henri's and Schmidt.

Race day morning my knee had made no improvements and made for an awful warm-up. Didn't think racing was a good idea, but I was there, and am not one to quit before I start.

Race starts and bam! No pain!. Adrenalin is a hell of a drug. I started second row, in a great spot, but was not mentally prepared to go, and let myself slip back. I was so hot, and with a long tough race, I Knew I would have to hold back to survive.

The field was not nearly as thin as last year, so making a podium spot was going to be very tough, even with very good power. I did feel alright, and was able to move up a bit, but my arms started to cramp, then my legs, and then all I could do was hold my spot. Last 2 laps were painful and I was tired and dehydrated, even with the great feeding from Mr. Henri.

Not the great ride I had at Buckwallow last year, but not a bad result either, coming in 11th, with one or 2 Americans rolling in ahead.

Now I need to sort this knee issue out, maybe get an MRI or something. Hope it doesn't force a long period off the bike.

Wish me luck!