Well it's been an interesting last few weeks. Unfortunately SXC Round 5 at Fort William didn't go to plan at all. Myself and fellow racer Dave Henderson were all prepped up and on our warm up lap 30mins before the start when I made a mistake into a fast technical section and took a rather big off. I jumped straight back on, thinking I was ok, only to realise my knee was pretty smashed up and I had wrenched my thumb badly. I hammered back up to the start to see the ambulance guys with thoughts of getting it patched up, but by the time I reached the damage was evident. The thumb was pretty painfull - I couldn't hold the bars properly or shift the gears and it had swollen up so badly my glove was tight on my hand. Oh dear. So that was it, race over and a trip to Fort Bill A+E for an X-ray. Thankfully it wasn't broken, just a bad ligament sprain. That's racing I guess! It certainly made me realise how much you need your thumb for every-day tasks, normally simple tasks were transformed into complete missions for the next few days :-D
As we speak, now 2 weeks later, the swelling/brusing is pretty much gone from my knee and hand, although the thumb is still quite painful, so i'm keeping off the MTB until it is fully healed.
One area where it didn't affect my riding is on the road bike. The road shifters don't require any thumb input so I could ride the road bike with no issue at all. Having obtained selection for the Scottish Road Race Championships in Hawick recently, I thought it would be a good event to make up for the past weekend.
The 9mile course was quite technical as far as Road racing goes, with narrow winding country lanes, some short climbs and long flat sections. We had to complete 9 laps of the course, totalling 81miles which was pretty tough, let me tell you. I was going into this race after a hard weeks training too, so was pretty tired to start with. To get maximum training benefit, I decided to go with most of the attacks, but unfortunately none managed to stay away until right near the end, where I got into a small chase group behind the leading group. I ended up finishing 15th out of an 80 man peleton, which I was quite happy with. I quite enjoyed the switch to road, it made for some different racing, and also hurt the legs in a different way, with all the accelerations and attacks. With MTB, it is more of a constant, TT style effort, and I certainly noticed that I didn't have that "snap" that I had last year when I focused training towards some Road events, so a great result considering.
Right now i've taken a few days off for recovery. I've been getting pretty fatigued over the last few weeks as a lot of riders do at this time of year so the rest is much needed. It seems that all i've been doing is eating and sleeping, but i've managed to get a few little tasks out of the way at the same time. I'm feeling a bit more refreshed today, and the ravenous appetite has calmed down so I think i'm pretty much recovered. Not too many races left on the race Calander, I have 2 scottish XC MTB, a North Wales British NPS and possibly some "fun" events to wind down the season with, such as Relentless 24hr in Fort William.
Anyhow, time to wash the bike from last weekend and watch some more Olympics on the BBC. Cheers!