Sunday, November 30, 2008

Cyclocross Saturday #8, Thanksgiving, and Other Stuff

Saturday was my 8th race of the season. It was the toughest/roughest race for me. At the start of the race a few of us were joking around about who was going to lead out the pack. We had about 50 yards of straight, wide road from the start to the first turn and then it funneled down to single track. I wanted to be with the lead group going into the singletrack so I wouldn't get stuck in the pile up. The starter called out the start and before I knew it I was leading us out of the start. I immediately realized my mistake and slowed some and was riding in second place before a third of the way through the first lap. I held my position with the lead group through the first two laps and slowly started to feel the fade coming on. I road strong and stayed with the lead group in about 5th place until lap three. There was one treacherous section with a short hill climb, hairpin turn at the top, and wet leaf covered roots at the bottom.

During the second lap I was behind 4th place going through this turn when he wrecked on the downhill. It slowed me up some as I worked passed him and then had to ride hard to try and catch the leaders. On the third lap I wrecked in the exact same spot. The bad part was the bike started sliding sideways before I wrecked so when I hit the ground my feet didn't come out the pedals. I extricated myself after a few second, hopped back on and started riding. I immediately felt a pain my lower left leg but kept riding anyway. It took me a lap to get my back in the game. By that time it was the last lap and I dropped a lot of positions. Then it was the last lap and I was determined not to drop anymore.

I finished in a demoralizing 17th place for my race division. Valuable lessons were learned and experience gained. My entire left shin was a lumpy, swollen, scratched mess that hurt just sitting there. It almost bruised (I don't bruise very easily). It is just showing a little discoloration. I am guessing when I went down my left slammed into one of the exposed tree roots.

The day wasn't a complete loss though. After each race they do a small raffle of cycling gear for the race participants. I was the second named called and I walked away with a Pearl Izumi Optik Jacket in 'screaming yellow'. It's going to be a great jacket for spring/fall days when the temps are moderate and the winds are blowing.

The last cross race of the season is this coming Saturday. I will admit I will be a little relieved when it's over. I know I know, that may seem a little odd to some because I do love the cyclocross, however, I am ready for ski season to begin for me. I've put off mounting my new skis to avoid all temptation until cross season was over. Fortunately (and unfortunately) Mother Nature decided to withhold the snow and all skiing temptation that accompanies every snowfall.

With that update out of the way we had a great Thanksgiving. We went up to my mom's house in Logan on Thursday for the Thanksgiving feast. I took my first shot at making pumpkin pie, which I might add, turned out delicious! Apparently I used the 'wrong' recipe though. When I told my grandma that I made the pies she said "you used the good recipe right?" I said I used the one on the can of pumpkin. I received a 'look' and I said "someone told me that's what recipe you use". The pies were still delicious but now I know better for next time. Unfortunately I didn't make the pie crust like I said I was going to try and do.

The rest of the weekend was a fantastic array of not doing much and just hanging out with Jessica and Penelope. Saturday we went to eat at California Pizza Kitchen. It was a total let down! We used to love that place but the food wasn't good. They just didn't deliver like they have in the past. After dinner we went to see the lights at Temple Square. We parked by our old apartment downtown and enjoyed the moderate temps and the beautiful night to be out. We reminisced about when we lived downtown, what we liked and didn't like about it, life before Penelope, and how it was close to this same two years ago (December 2nd to be exact) that we went to look at the lights and then Penelope was born the next day!

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