I got back to Bloomington Wednesday night well-rested and ready to get back on my bike, as I had been bikeless since the end of the Ouachita Challenge. My bike rode home with my friend Chrysa on Monday and I flew home on Wednesday. Not really the best laid plans, but the brilliant travel plan that I had when I signed up back in December slowly fell apart as the race drew nearer. Oh well, you live, you learn. It was my first time "travel racing" as my husband would say.
Unfortunately, my anxiousness to start training again was completely killed my first day back at work. So much work had piled up while I was gone and I got stressed out to the point of feeling physically ill: headache, random body pains, dizziness, and nausea. That bled on into Friday and I ended up not riding until this morning.
Today's ride was my first official "mountain bike ride" of the season (last weekend was a beast all of it's own). I went to Brown County to try out my singletrack legs and found them quite lacking, even on less-techical terrain and with a non-exploding heart rate. I was riding very weak both fitness-wise and techincally. I've had stomach pains since breakfast this morning that didn't really subside for my ride, but I got the distinct feeling that I still wouldn't have exactly been a superstar otherwise.
I did get some good practice on the "fake rocks" today though. I pretty much rode out the most techical section and back to see if I'd gained any skills in last week's experience. Overall, I was actually pretty wussy, as I tend to be when I'm out of practice, but I did manage to clear the "S-shape rock garden" for the first time ever. It's considered to be one of the more difficult elements on that trail system, so that was an accomplishment.
I nine more weeks to get myself ready for the Lumberjack 100 and while podium places are probably out of reach, I would at least like to get through it with a little less pathetic suffering than Ouachita. Taking five-day breaks from riding are probably not the way to do that, but I'm going to try really hard to make sure that doesn't happen again, well, like ever... We'll see about that.
In case anyone was wondering. I made the last-minute decision for Mrs. Biggleworth to have her surgery while I was out of town. I didn't want Adam to have to take care of her afterwards by himself, but the vet was leaving town the day I was getting back and I didn't want Mrs. B to have to wait two more weeks. I figured that given the choice, it was more important for the vet to be there for the surgery than me, so she had the operation while I was on my way to Arkansas.
It went really well and she's feeling much better. Now she just has a bald belly and a little strip of one front leg shaved (for the IV, I presume) that makes her look like she's wearing Uggs.