First and foremost, apologies for the lapse of updates. Life decided to take over a little so cycling and training had to take a back seat.
Since my last update, i was inducted into the Pearl Izumi champions team for 2017. In total there are 50 spread through different parts of the British isles, with a whole host of disciplines and ability levels. To see some of the people that have places, is does beg the question why me?? For the induction day, we were invited to Madison HQ in Milton Keynes, for a lesson is the roots of the brand, a discussion on where the brand is going and a nutritional chat from Tim Lawson (founder of SIS and Stealth Nutrition). Having never actually met any of the champions other than comments on Facebook, it was great to put people to the names. It was also a great opportunity for me to meet Andy Hampshire, who through the champions page had agreed to coach me for the year.
Whilst i certainly enjoyed listening to how the brand came about and where the design and development is heading, our nutritional chat was all a little over my head. I'll stick to everything in moderation and tapering off the rubbish before an event. After all the presentations, we were given our Champion Team kit to get changed into for the ride out. As i seemed to be going through a phase of breaking my bikes in the run up to the induction, I asked to borrow a bike which resulted in me being lent a Ridley Fenix SL, full carbon frame and 105 parts mix very nice to ride. Probably even nicer to ride if i'd set the seat at the correct height and not spent 2 hours over reaching causing injury. We live we learn. Having picked the faster paced ride of the 3 options, i figured Buckinghamshire was relatively flat, it is not. I realised that i might have been pushing myself a little too much, as i was blowing within 3 miles, a lot of the fellow riders i was with race on the road or time trials. Along for the ride was Tim Lawson which was a great opportunity for those that still had questions to ask about nutrition, needless to say when he was riding at the side of me there wasn't much in the way of conversation. It was certainly very picturesque in Buckinghamshire, after the ride we all said our goodbyes and thanked the team for putting on a fantastic day.
8 days after the induction i was taking part in the first round of the Midlands MTB XC league at Sherwood Pines. Whilst i certainly enjoy cross country racing, i figure i'm not cut out for the shorter stint races and better suited for the 3 hour ones. Those little whippets certainly know how to blaze a trail. At this particular race i had two supporters, armed with cowbells and horns. whilst this certainly added an atmosphere to the day, i'm not sure well received it was by fellow competitors. with a few riders not looking impressed by the encouragement. After finishing in a disappointing position and deciding to take a head first lunge into a tree, i ended the race and realised that the pain from over stretching had turned into a full blown hip injury. Which brings us up to now, having spent the last 6 weeks spending time with family and recovering, its safe to say i'm looking forward to getting back out on the bikes. That and spamming peoples instagram feeds with pics.