After our last solid block of racing in Virginia and Ohio, we've had a bit of time to settle down a bit and get back to the basics of training, resting, and not travelling. Travelling and racing is exciting and fun no doubt, but waking up every morning in my own bed, showering in my own shower, and being able to wash my clothes whenever I want - it's MasterCard style priceless.
The TIME Factory Team is based out of Winston-Salem, NC in our fantastic team house. I love Winston, the people there, everything about it really, but when it's time to really get down to business and get back to the simple life, I've got to head home, and home for me is the oasis in the middle of the northeastern Georgia countryside of Athens.
I love racing my bike, but when it comes down to it, I love just riding my bike on small, little used roads till I get tired, going home, eating, going to bed, and doing it all again the next day. I love that. I love waking up sore and pretty much making up my mind that there won't be any riding today, but then I get on my bike, work out the kinks, whine a bit, but an hour or two later all soreness is forgotten and the hours just flow on by. So with this three week period between Ohio and the Nationals, I've gotten a great opportunity to get back to the basics, do some long, hard training rides and work on my tan. Sort of. I don't tan so well, but I do burn better than most.
The riding here is so nice - I can ride all by my lonesome all day, paved or dirt, or I can ride with my good friend Jacob Fetty, or I can hook up with any one of the numerous group rides, none more fun than those led by the inimitable David Crowe and his cohorts. Seriously, everyday I wake up and it's straight to the map to see where I'm headed off to explore for the day, or I just follow Jacob into any number of the unknown reaches that seem to be everywhere for me. It's funny to me that riding hard and beating myself up physically is the one certain path to mental refreshment for me. Just taking a week off doesn't do much, but going home and riding hard everyday punctuated by some good dining experiences at my favourite restaurants with my favourite beverages, what more do I need?
The mental break provided by these few weeks is welcomed to the extreme, and I am raring to go and get back into the racing to come. I need not worry too much about racing over the coming month, because we've got a block that will set a new personal record for me for sheer volume, not to mention quality. Next up on the schedule for the team is the Iron Hill Twilight up in West Chester, Pennsylvania this Saturday. It's a big time USA Crit, so it should have all of the big players, and the biggest baller of them all, Mark Hekman, our very own Winston-Salem homeboy. After that it's on to Nationals, Superweek, and then our home state series of crits, Crossroads, culminating with our hometown NRC, Hanes Park.
It's about time to get back to racing, and we'll be aiming to make our presence felt.