15 July 2011


XTERRA Mountain Championships in Beaver Creek are tomorrow, and leading into the race I have had a bunch of thoughts going through my head.  It is common to have little issues add little bits of pressure to what can already be a some what stressful time.  Here is small list of a few of the common little pressures that are there almost every race:
  • Feeling that you are under or over trained
  • Feel a little niggle of an old injury
  • Having a little sniffle or sneeze
  • Personal expectations
  • Expectations that friends and family have
  • It your equipment in good shape so you will not have a mechanical issue.
There are also the occasional pressures that trump the little things:
  • Racing in your hometown or at your Regional Championship
  • Racing in front of a large group of friends and/or family
  • Racing the big ones; National and World Championships
Then there are the more rare pressures that come along, as much as you try not to think about them, they are always there, these pressures are different for everyone.  For me at XTERRA Mountain Champs this is something entirely new

Race ready! Thanks to 2XU, Pro Cycling, Rotor, SRM, Ergon, Sidi, Effetto Mariposa

I have worn #1 bib at races in the past, but they are smaller local races and I am more proud of it than anything else because there is a good chance I won the race the previous year.  This is different, this is one of the major XTERRA championships through the year.  Other racers and spectators see number 1 and they have expectations, technically their expectations shouldn't affect you but they are still there.  I did get some help getting this number by a few guys not showing up to races, but you still have to race well enough to be in that position and it is something I continually go back to, I have had my best year yet in Xterra finishing in the top five in in 4 of the 5 races thus far, and getting my first top 3.  The goal is to have this number be a routine thing, I can only hope that as Phil Liggett says about the yellow jersey in the Tour De France, that having bib 1, give you wings.
A big reason behind the improvement is just being healthy and being able to put in the most solid off-season of training if a few years.  The support from 2XU for race, training and wetsuits, Pro Cycling for the Specialized Epic 29er to race this year.  Rotor has helped me trick the bike out with super light and strong cranks, stems and seatposts on both road and mountain bikes.  To complement the mountain bike I am riding the Rotor 3D+ SRM crank with 53/39 chain rings on the road bike.  The SRM has been key to improving my bike strength this year, there is no better or more accurate PowerMeter out there.  I have the best cycling shoes in the world to power both bikes with my Sidi's and especially the Terra's which are the only Xterra specific shoe on the market currently.  I stay super comfortable as well with Ergon Grips and cycling gloves and stay flat free thanks to Effetto Mariposa's Caffelatex and keep things tight thanks to the torque wrench.  The Colorado Running Company has kept me running for years in the right shoes and have introduced me to some great products over the years, namely 2Toms for their Blister Shield and Sports Shield which keep me blister and chafe free in the nastiest conditions.
I can't thank you guys enough for the support and help getting me to where I have worked so hard to reach today.  Saturday it is game on and I will put all the best weapons to work with one goal, to keep that #1 bib where it deserves to be in any race.

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