Cross is just around the corner and the dirt crits only have 2 more races! Pretty crazy that the summer has gone by so quickly. I haven't blogged much, mostly because I haven't had too much to say with respect to my cancer...which generally seems to be the more therapeutic and justifiable topic upon which to blorg. I mean blog. Bike racing, riding, and training this year is something I feel is simultaneously a selfish but extremely humbling and gratifying experience. I guess I should try to write more about the humbling and gratifying part.
With respect to dirt bike riding, other riders (namely Pirtle and Chris Ploch), the trails, weather, bike parts flatting or breaking, and training all keep kicking my butt. I'm glad I've been able to pull myself up each time, but there have been some nasty crashes while mountain biking and some close calls on the road. Time spent on the bike this year is around 280hrs and around 4000miles have been ridden. Last wednesday I was out doing 20min intervals and puked in my mouth. Jeez. This is totally and completely all for fun and even upon reflection looking back on the money spent, time taken from other parts of life, and the amount of energy going into riding...I guess I really am an adrenaline junkie. But strangely, probably 90% of my time riding I'm in a very different place with my mind, emotions, and spirit than the fight-or-flight catecholamine induced high of adrenaline pumping through my veins. I love this form of being outside and I love the feeling of crushing a steep hill and then shredding a downhill on my mountain bike. I love the sound and feeling of floating down the local farm roads on a road bike. And I love the solitude and beauty encountered while riding gravel roads that always, eventually, connect to the katy trail along the Missouri river, what an incredible part of this continent!
I'm addicted and I don't think I get addicted easily to things.
The racing is amazing, but I imagine at some point in the next 2-3 years (basically when I'm done with my research and PhD) racing probably won't happen at all. So it goes. This year I'm lucky enough to keep things pretty well balanced. I've found myself the homemaker, a very happy father and supportive husband, and still able to get some good work done as a scientist. And racing has fit in. I'm stoked to give it my all this year and next...keeping things super amateur, ultra-fun, and hopefully safe.
I spent some energy earlier this year trying to somehow unite all of what is above, with some type of cancer-service-based thing. I tried to get a race team involved with Pedal the Cause but things haven't worked out. I don't usually say this particular phrase, but 'it isn't meant to be'. I guess one of the reasons I'm drawn to science and medicine is that I just simply don't understand business. Oh well. It ultimately has just felt like this lofty goal was just some way of justifying an ultimately somewhat selfish activity. But like I said, I'm all good with that. Life is short, you gotta do things you love each and every day if you can.