It’s been three years since I last attempted Billy’s Epic Training Loop, but with less than a week before my race in Tasmania and a forecast for beautiful weather, I figured today was the perfect time to do it again. After a 5am wake up call, I locked my kayak at the Loma boat ramp and started riding from Westwater at 8:15am. Although it was a little chilly to start, the morning was gorgeous with clear blue skies.
I rode for almost two hours to Rabbit Valley before seeing anyone. The peacefulness continued all the way to Salt Creek where I saw five guys climbing up from Troy Built. Salt Creek is a gnarly descent and these guys looked like they had felt every foot of technical elevation gain. I think they were more surprised to see me coming down than I was to see them.
About to head down Salt Creek overlooking the Colorado.
I finished up my 40 mile ride to Loma in 3 hours and 40 minutes (5 minutes faster than last time) and then quickly transitioned for 25 miles of paddling back to Westwater.
Before I knew it, I had paddled 11 miles and was feeling good. At about hour three, I noticed I slowed a little bit and was ready to be done. I pulled up to the boat ramp after exactly 3 hours and 40 minutes of paddling – the exact same time as my biking leg. Weird. Although I felt a bit slow for the last five miles, I still managed to drop 20 minutes off my paddling time from three years ago.
I made it home in time for dinner with kids and Juniper was excited to tell me that she rode her bike a long way today as well – six miles all the way down the bike path to the Harvest Festival at Rock Bottom Ranch. She was so proud. I love it when an awesome day just gets better when I return home.
I took a much needed beak from racing this weekend to enjoy some time with family and friends. It has been a rough season starting with my stomach issues back in February so my mind and body really needed a break. My brother-in-law Patrick came for a weekend visit so we had to pack as much in as possible.
It has been over two years since I have been on the raft so it was great to paddle the Shoshone section of the Colorado River. We picked Juniper and Ian up at Grizzly Creek and floated down to Two Rivers Park in Glenwood. Watching Juniper enjoy the raft and river as much as Ian and I do was such an amazing experience.
Although I haven’t been feeling amazingly well recently, I decided to get out for a quick mountain bike down to the mail box and back on Saturday afternoon. I haven’t done this ride in a long time without towing Juniper in the Chariot so it was a nice surprise when I made it back to the house in record time. I have been feeling a bit sluggish on the bike in the last few races and I know this comes from a lack of time on the bike so I headed out for more time on the bike Sunday morning.
As is often the case, I was on somewhat of a short time frame so I had to push myself for the whole ride. I headed up to ride Forest Hollow to the Scout Trail which was in great shape due to the rain the night before. Having had a few frustrating mountain bike rides recently, I was relieved to be enjoying the climbing, big-ring singletrack and the steep descent. And even better, I made it back within the timeframe which meant I was riding fairly well.
Relieved to be hopefully on the upswing (or at least feeling that way) and to have the next few weeks for training without the stress of racing. I love to race but sometimes the best thing is some time off to get me motivated again!