Back On The Bike (Possibly Off It Again)

It’s been three very long weeks since I had my crash at Mt Stromlo during Round 10 of the CORC XC 12/13 Series.  It was my first venture into short course racing after entering and successfully completing several endurance mountain bike races.

As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I went into the XC race full of confidence… Maybe too much confidence.   I’m not saying it’s the reason I had my off or is responsible for the extent of my injury; the truth is I entered the race as I wanted/needed a challenge and it just so happened I felt fully dialled in during the ride.   But then, seconds from the finish line I attempted a jump, didn’t stick the landing and have been going through the last few weeks in considerable pain.

I’ve never been one to sit back and wait for injuries to heal and for rehab to work.  The truth is I’ve torn muscles, broken bones and had bouts of acute illness and gone straight back to work or back into sport.  It’s a stupid thing to do and as I get older and my susceptibility for injury increases; it takes longer for me to heal.

So now on the eve of Round 1 of the new CORC XC 2013 Series I face a conundrum:
Do I race or do I sit this one out?

There is not straightforward and simple answer; only more questions…
Do I want to race? … Yes
Should I race? … No
Am I fit enough? … Maybe
Has my chest & shoulder healed enough? … No
Is it safe for me to ride? … Maybe

I went for a ride yesterday afternoon on the same track as tomorrow’s race.  I only did one lap and I struggled a little bit.  It takes a fair few kilometres for me to warm up and by the time I had reached the 7km mark I was finally warm.  My chest and shoulder held up well, but I didn’t go as fast as I normally do and will need to go during the race.

However I woke up this morning quite tender and tonight I’m in considerable pain in my shoulder where the tear originates.  As with all muscle injuries you don’t feel the full extent until you cool down; and well I’m feeling it right now.

I’ve prepped Zooey and set my alarm for tomorrow morning with the intention of riding out to Mt Stromlo as part of my warm up; although a 30km commute seems a little excessive for a 20km race.

I guess I’ll just wait and see and if I decide it’s best not race tomorrow I’ll go out to Mt Stromlo and cheer on the rest of The Berm riders and help out my local MTB club.


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