Last Sunday, I raced close to home at the West Chester Cross Classic at Rustin High School. As a spectator at this venue two years ago (when I was pregnant with Maeve), I watched the competition longingly thinking this is my kind of course...can't wait to get back at it!
Despite finishing in the back of the pack, I had such a great time on that course (which I can best describe as super flowy with the perfect balance of challenging, yet subtle elevation changes and just enough recovery to maintain energy and enthusiasm on every lap, if that even makes sense).
Although I haven't been training for this season and have only been riding once a week at best, all the little nuances of racing cross feel familiar and comfortable to me (you know, except for the part where I'm grossly out of race form and hanging on by a mere thread from the get-go).
Surprisingly, I have felt nothing but calm and relaxed while staging and waiting for that whistle...
Surprisingly, I've been relieved to start in the last row...
I'm just having fun with it.
Racing is fun when I have nothing to prove to myself or anybody else (conversely, racing is fun in an entirely different sense of the word when I am kicking ass and ripping legs off, but I'm pretty sure those days are behind me for now).
Having said all that, I was all set to show up at Crossasurus Awesome this weekend and keep up my "racing" streak; however, I woke up today feeling especially sh*tty with a sore throat and body aches.
No need to push through, as there are still plenty of races left on the calendar in the coming months.
I've been running and dabbling in a little strength training more than I've been riding.
At this stage of the game, I'm happy to squeeze in whatever kind of workout I can between kid stuff/grownup stuff/life...stuff.
In short, breaking a sweat is more about preserving my mental health than gaining fitness right now.
I'm feeling much better.
I still think about the loss of my mom every day, but I am not wallowing in my grief.
My dad reminded me that my mom wouldn't want me to be consumed by this or to be so upset by her death.
As for therapy and medication, I've accepted that I do need a little help and probably always will to some degree.
I am depressed and I do have serious anxiety issues.
Not because my mom died or because my brother is in jail or because crazy sh*t is happening in the world...
With the understanding that there are biological/genetic/chemical pieces to my "puzzle", that my depression and anxiety are not just situational (although my situation as of late has certainly exacerbated those issues...duh), I can handle it better.
Or more willingly.
All this to say, to reiterate, I'm feeling much better.
Wow, if that's not a rambling, narcissistic update, I don't know what is...
|look, mom, I'm "racing"! Photo courtesy of Dennis Smith from Whirlybird 2014|