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Friday, March 8, 2013

Home Time.. For a Short Time..

Since training camp I have been hanging out at home, in the beautiful sunshine getting some even more beautiful tan-lines and making the most of this hot weather. I have also been working hard with my chiropractor from England, Ali McMaster. This lady is amazing, I really do not know what I would do without her knowledge and the work she has put into me. Last year while I was suffering from what I call the year long one legged effort, Ali would skype me weekly and she is the reason I was able to keep riding at the level I was with all the other issues going on. Sometimes I would make my room-mate and good friend Emma Grant do manipulations to me, Ali, over Skype, would explain to Emma where and how she could hit me as hard as she could on some part of my legs (she says she didn’t like hitting me, I don’t believe her for a second). I would also use rolls and rolls and rolls of Spider Tech tape (http://www.spidertech.com/) to keep me going forward.
An example of a bit of taping effort after skyping Ali... got to cover all the options..right!?

Anyway, Ali has been around here almost ever second day (while she is on holiday in NZ), making me absolutely perfect and sorting out all my ‘issues’. She is not only the World’s best Chiropractor but she sort of just knows everything. She has an answer for everything and is just.. well.. AMAZING.
When I am not with Ali, and not on my bike, I am enjoying a bit of CrossFit here and there with Mount (and the new Tauranga) CrossFit (http://mountcrossfit.com/). I have been doing this since Surgery as I get really bored in the gym and because as a cyclist I do not get any impact what-so-ever, which is terrible for my bone density. Therefore by doing cross-fit I am not only working the muscles I would in the gym, things like box jumps, skipping and running are also incorporated, helping the impact side of things and also keeping things competitive (which in-turn keeps me happy).

The past few weeks I have also been meeting some really cool up and coming triathletes and cyclists from all over Tauranga.

Last week I was given the opportunity to join in on Lyndy Wickham’s ride with the junior tri kids that she takes out for rides and bike handling skills each week. I could not get over the enthusiasm and talent these juniors had, it is really exciting for the future of the sport. One of the older girls, Amelia, has just been selected for the Nationals in Christchurch because she had an outstanding cycle split time in the selection race. I tried to turn her to the better side (cyclist) on the ride, I think she will become a roady in no-time with that kind of talent. 

Me with some of the awesome up and coming riders, great group of Kids. 

It is so impressive to see the time and work that people like Lyndy put in to motivate young people to get out on their bikes. Iris Thomas is another example of someone who puts their entire life into helping kids as young as Primary School level to get introduced to the sport and use cycling as an alternate form of transport. Iris also teaches the students road rules so that when they get their drivers licenses they will appreciate cyclists and give them some space. Iris has started up a Bright Sparks program which helps to encourage Intermediate students who had learnt cycle safety earlier on to find safe and fun routes to ride to school. I was lucky enough to come in to my old school Tauranga Intermediate and see what it was all about as well as meeting some children who were part of the program. The students had a really impressive understanding of how to check their brakes were working, the tyres were pumped up and the helmet was on properly, we then took some photos with Jamie Troughton (who is also part of the program with Iris) and the two of them took the kids for a ride on the road teaching them road etiquette and showing them how fun it is to ride a bike!

Kurt Pickard and I with some Tauranga Intermediate students on the 'Bright Sparks' program. Picture Credit; Jamie Troughton/Dscribe Journalism.

Now I have just under a week left before I head back to the States to start the racing season. I am pretty excited to get it kicked off and to see all the team again!

I also just want to say a huge Thank You to Richard Bates, Greg Taylor and members of the Tauranga Cycling Club for your incredibly generous support in helping me get overseas this year. I am overwhelmed by the kindness of some people who are so passionate about cycling and the support of a young rider trying to live her dream.

I have been riding with Tauranga Cycling Club since I first started and being able to share my stories and progress with the people who have been there from the start is all worth it! Even if they still like to torture me on Tuesday night Worlds…

Thanks for reading!

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