Finally the stars are aligned and I have not only the time to write but also a few pix to share.
What have I been doing since I returned to Melbourne..working, training, scaling "mountains" (ie trying to keep the climbing legs working) going to Italian classes and getting out on the MTB.
Last thing 1st. MTB.
I put my name down to go to NZ for the Aus/NZ MTBO challenge along with Alex with a plan to extend the holiday and visit a few places in NZ..eg Hobbiton. However, Alex had extended his European holiday budget to the point of having to cancel his NZ plans leaving me to wonder if I should still go. Eventually I decided I would and lo and behold I found that I was in the Aus team no less! Riding in the 70 + year age group and paired against a similar aged Kiwi lady...they even changed the rules to allow a 1 person rather than 3 person age group. so a need to get out on the MTB arose!
This weekend I went in for the Forrest Festival (that's NOT a
spelling mistake) a 2 day/5 race event in Forrest. I hadn't quite
realised how the format would play out but on finding out that after my
first race of 15km I would have to wait for over 4 hours for my next
start, decided to pull the plug. Actually I was really tired...my
training to date not been for MTB and the added concentration required
during the 15km/73 min ride over single track exhausted me. It was quite
frustrating to have to get off the bike on the technical downhills and
then have to overtake on the next climb those who'd passed me while I
was going downhill !
Our accommodation was
fantastic...very bush and as can be seen by the pix there were King
Parrots begging to be fed. Alex did the feeding as I have a thing about
birds flapping around my head...an issue stemming from a traumatic
experience I had as a ?6 or 7 year old when I went too close to an owl's
nest and it flew at me and landed on my back. An experience that I can
still recall in minute detail.
As for the rest..
I've been working on a casual basis with my long time employer and today am checking out another job that will keep me busy for 2 days a week til after Christmas.
I'm still attending Italian classes at CIS in Carlton ...they have a sweet deal whereby 4 weeks into the term you can add as many classes as you chose, providing they are not already full.
I'm occasionally racing crits on Tuesday evenings with Eastern Vets and am taking part in the 7 peak alpine climb series where one climbs the 7 decent climbs here in Victoria. I've done 1 so far..Lake Mountain and next Sunday will attempt to conquer Baw Baw..the worst/steepest climb in Australia.
I have also been having skills sessions with Helen Kelly from Kelly Cycle Coaching
to improve on a few technical issues eg descending,cornering, riding rollers, riding no hands, riding no hands on the rollers(!) track stand etc etc. The descending issue was actually one I realised was going to hamper me in my 2014 holiday when I plan on climbing (and descending) many of the iconic passes in the Dolomiti.
Training took a bit of a hit when I had to have a minor op on my toe...getting rid of a ganglion that wouldn't go away but with the help of a pair of sandals that would accept cleats I was able to at least get time on the ergo..totally ignoring the surgeons instructions to stay off the bike for 5 days. Well ok...some might say that was silly but I analysed the situation...saw that the toe/op site was not being compromised and that it wasn't moving any more than when I was walking......
that's all she wrote