Leadville or Bust!

  • Jul 15, 2013

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    Soooo… back in February (pre-broken foot) I was presented with an opportunity to be on a team and participate in the Leadville 100 Mountain Bike Race.  My initial response was, "YES, YES, and YES!!!"  As a weekend warrior mountain bike enthusiast from Colorado (home state to the Leadville 100) this was like a dream come true.  From what I hear, it's a near impossible lottery to get a chance at this ride, so naturally, I couldn't let this opportunity slide by.  With an excited "yes" I was all of a sudden signed up for this insane test of endurance.  My thought was, well I'm training for the CrossFit Games so I'm sure I'll be in descent shape and now I can use this race as motivation to get out of the gym and do what I truly love for some cross-training.

     Leadville 100

    Then on March 5th, I had an unfortunate bike accident and broke my foot.  I wish I could say it was while I was training for the race, but it was just on my ride home from work one day.  That break happened the day before my CrossFit competition season began, taking me out for the year.  It also put a definite downward spiral to my ability to train for Leadville.  So, for about 2 months I was out of commission for serious training and could only do what I was able to do in a boot (basically crank on the row machine with my boot along for the ride on a skateboard…the stationary bike wasn't even an option because of the pain).  After the boot came off, I had the impression I was going to bounce back and be able to tackle my training for Leadville and conquer a new, unplanned goal for the summer.  Again, my inexperience at injury reared its ugly head and made me realize it's actually a process to get back in the game.  You mean I can't go from zero to hero in a day?  Ahhhhh!

     

    In the last 2 months since I've been out of the boot, I have been able to do some riding but not nearly as much as I would have hoped.  With the whole foot thing and also just the reality of life getting in the way a bit, my training has been less than ideal.  As a competitive person, this is hard to swallow, but with the help of the people around me I am gaining a better perspective on things.  Rather than focusing on the fact that I am not really ready for this race physically (and it's going to be BRUTAL), I am focusing on the amazing things about this journey.  I have been able to get back to what I love… being active in the outdoors.  I have the chance to go ride 100 miles on my mountain bike, in my home state, at 11,000+ feet elevation with some amazing athletes that are challenging themselves to their limits.  I am realizing that competition isn't what life is about and it's okay to just enjoy the path that you're made to take.  But most importantly, I am doing this for the whole reason I even have this opportunity to be on the team.  Team First Descents offers young adult cancer fighters and survivors a free outdoor adventure experience designed to empower them to climb, paddle and surf beyond their diagnosis, defy their cancer, reclaim their lives and connect with others doing the same.  We are required to raise a minimum of $3,000 (by August 1st) for these kids in order to race.  I am asking you all, if possible, to donate (tax deductible) what you can to support these kids.  You can donate here. 

      First Descents

    It's all about perspective… a broken foot doesn't seem so bad afterall.  I feel like the luckiest person in the world to have the chance to help these kids get joy from what I am passionate about, learning more about yourself with "Mother Nature".  Of course my goal is to finish this race, even if it takes me all 12 hours to do it… the effort I put out that day will be for these kids and knowing that each pedal stroke up those agonizing mountain climbs is nothing in comparison to what they have been or are going through.

     

    Thank you in advance and don't you worry, there will be a full in depth post to come after the race on August 10th!