Report for the Week of Sunday, 6 Jan. – Saturday, 13 Jan.

Whoa. What do I say? This was a rough week for me. I found my way into the upswing of training, but I went down twice quite hard on the bike.

Sunday, 6 Jan.
Christian and I went out to Chuck Lennon at DeLeon Springs for a group ride with some others. I felt strong but the long downhill log ride that I hit successfully all the time took me down. I’m not quite sure what happened. Overconfident? Maybe. Who knows? For the crash, I left my back tire on the log and my front tire dropped off the right side, which pushed me into my bike and resulted in a not-too-friendly log hug. I hopped right back on the bike and kept going, but I received a cut on my hand and some bruising on my chest. The bruise on my back did not really show until a day or so later, and my knee was slightly bruised. I’m so glad I wear knee pads. My new Fox Launch Pros saved my knee cap and possibly a hospital visit. We did two full laps of the park with an extra Red loop mixed in for good measure.

For Monday and Tuesday, work started, so I used the time to get rolling there and to rest.

Wednesday, 9 Jan.
I hit up the Dairy before 6:00 a.m. for a headlamp inspired run. I’ve been nursing a bit of tendonitis around my patellas, so I kept it short and mellow. Plus, I wanted to be a bit ginger, as I’d never run trails in the dark. Carriage>Bell>Kaye Paul>Powerline>Compromise – probably about 3.5 miles.

Thursday, 10 Jan.
As work starts, the pool that is across the sidewalk from my office begins to beckon, and with the shameful fact that I hadn’t been in the pool since before the Dirthead, it was high time I got my chlorine fix. I swam at a medium pace with some short intervals to get back in the groove. I felt good at that pace and held it for about 30-35 minutes before it was time for another meeting. Plus, I did not want to over do it and find myself strained.

Friday, 11 Jan.
This is when it got interesting. Bob, Christian and I headed up to Flagler to ride Graham Swamp, which is arguable the hardest and most technically challenging system in the area. Last time we rode there, the conditions were horrible, and I went down on some rain-created ruts, helmet saving the left side of my noggin. This time, less than 1 mile in, I hit a small kicker at a good pace and got a bit of air, but it kicked me slightly sideways, and I landed in a patch of soft sand, lost my edge, almost pulled it back until the second patch of soft sand really took me down. My bike folded on me, bars went around, body akimbo, and my chest impacted my fist, my bars and stem, completely knocking the wind out of me, which hadn’t happened since I was in elementary school, 25-30 years ago. The boys didn’t know whether to laugh or be concerned, and I could see both on their faces, as I tried to get out “Yes” and “I’m ok” through what most of us know as series of breathless moans, a combination of trying to refill my lungs and fear from lack of oxygen.

We still rode the rest of the 6.5 mile loop and a second loop to top it off, where Christian had a good fall. The second loop for me was much better. On the first loop, I was feeling cautious and hesitant, and my bars were slightly askew. For the second loop, I straightened my bars and focused on my errors. I need to remember to command the hits and not let them control me. I learned that even when on new terrain, I need to be confident and in command. I think this is what led to my crash.

Results from My Crash:
I’m a bit sore in several places, but the big one is that I’ve bruised some ribs. It could be worse, but that is what I have diagnosed. I am not getting severe spasms, so I know nothing is broken, and I’m almost 100 percent that nothing is cracked either. I’ll just have to take it easy. The bummer is I may not be able to hit the pool or the gym for a couple to a few weeks.

Saturday, 12 Jan.
Shael and I went out to the Dairy to help work on the new Compromise Trail. We busted butt for about 3 hours and worked with a couple Dairy rats, John and Jim if memory serves, with the goal of creating flow. We took down, built, and smoothed out the trail and improved the line tremendously. I can’t wait to hit it up on my bike. My chest and ribs did not fair well with the strain, so I spent the rest of the day managing my pain, resting, and nursing a nice pack of beer.

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About Jim Newell

Associate Professor of English, Daytona State College / Thinker / Ponce Inlet Surfer / Improviser / Dad
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2 Responses to Report for the Week of Sunday, 6 Jan. – Saturday, 13 Jan.

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