I was out riding with a friend last week...He asked: "How long is the Death Race?"
"125km..." I said.
"Holy s#!t that's long!"
There seems to be a general theme here...Why am I not concerned about the challenge that looms ahead? Is it over-confidence? or simply lack of knowledge?
There's 5 1/2 weeks left before DR-day and I have to admit that I'm getting a wee bit nervous...I thought that training was going so well and then blam! I got stung with a serious achilles injury that has taken a solid 3 weeks to recover from...Yesterday I tested myself up with a hard set of intervals on up/down terrain - and despite my (first) bear encounter, it all went very well. So now what? More intervals? Needless to say, I'm itching to enter a race as I need to boost my confidence level back up again...
But looking back at these past 3 weeks, I don't think I could have sped up the recovery process any more - I truly believe that I did the best I could...Massage, ART, Graston, physio, icing, compression, ibuprofen, self-massage, Tiger balm, Traumeel, Arnica cream, stretching, core, voodoo chanting...You name it, I've done it! So am I ready? I'm so paranoid about any little tweek I feel down there that I'm not sure if I'm ready of not - This patience 'thing' is killing me! If I could rate my achilles' strength/flexibility, it would be around 90% as of today...But is this good enough and strong enough to race?
Time flies when you're having fun, and since I couldn't really train back home, I figured I'd pass some of the recovery time (3 days acutally) doing something a bit more productive...like let's say...go to France for the new Salomon XR Crossmax launch and Exo (compression) apparel Re-Launch! The trip also came at the time I was starting to run again, so enough to do a few laps and test some of that new rubber Salomon was flaunting!
La Vieille Ville d'Annecy was a little busier this time around...
Dinner with the crew in Annecy - The Canadian group was excited to test the new shoes the following morning.
So here it is...the moment of truth - Ready of not, here I go! I've made the decision to race in the upcoming Ultimate XC in Mt Tremblant (Saturday, June 26th), and will suffer the consequences of my actions. If the achilles is not ready or if I feel any discomfort at any time, I'll pay the price and WILL drop out to limit the damage. The thought of being sidelined for another 3 weeks does not sit well with me (at all), so I won't be taking any unecessary risks out there...Ultimate XC is a tough course, both mentally and physically challenging, and I don't want to sacrifice a no-show at DR. But, since all signs are showing 'green', I'll go with my gut on this one, and push my luck - It's time to race!