The “Summer of 2017” will go down as possibly the busiest/most hectic/most stressful summer for me of all time. What started out as solid winter of training for what was to be my “Swan Song” season on the XTERRA Pan-Am Tour as a professional, ended up including a car accident resulting in the “totaling” of our new Promaster Van, selling our home, buying a new home, moving, working through insurance stuff to get a new van, some family stress, coaching the Green Mountain High School Mountain Bike Team (this ended up being the highlight of the summer!), and finally settling into our new home all over the last 4 months. All of this left little time/energy/motivation to train, much less try and race. So after only one XTERRA Pan-Am Tour race back in May in Alabama, a handful of mountain bike races, including a Co-Ed Duo Team WIN at Firecracker 50 (with Kathy!!), my “season” came to a fizzling end in August.
Finally in September I was able to regroup a bit as we finally got our family settled into our new home, kids back to school, and have a great time training with and being a part of super fun High School MTB racing program. The dust began to settle some in my birthday month and I have been able to take a few deep breaths of having the stressful summer behind us and begin looking towards 2018.
Two big changes are occurring in 2018…
I am taking a step back from triathlon and retiring from professional XTERRA racing.
I turned 39 last month and will be able to race Masters 40+ in 2018, as I turn my full training/racing attention towards mountain bike racing.
XTERRA has been a wonderful experience for me the last 12 years and I am sure I will return to XTERRA again in the future. When I do, it will be when I train and race for the pleasure of the fitness you achieve in the sport. XTERRA racing has been the most enjoyable form of training and racing for me and when I return it will be in the older age-groups and for the experience of the process.
In between now and when I return to XTERRA, I have some lofty endurance mountain bike racing goals to check off. For the next three to fours years, I’ve decided that focusing on one sport and two activities (MTB & Strength Training) will work best with our current busy lifestyle as parents of three high-school aged girls and business owners.
Cycling is my true passion and I feel like I have at least a few more solid seasons of racing at the elite level… and along the way perhaps I snag some Masters Championships on the mountain bike.
So all that said, here are the following A-Priorty events on my 2018 racing calendar. These could change slightly, and I will surely be adding several more additional low-priority events to the mix, but for now these are the targets for the season ahead:
- May: USA Cycling Marathon National Champs
- July: Firecracker 50 (co-ed duo, defending champs w/ Kathy)
- July: Leadville Stage Race
- August: Leadville 100
- August: Breck Epic (co-ed duo team w/ Kathy)
For my entire 2018 season, I plan to share my training progress, thoughts and racing experiences with those of you that are interested in rolling along with me.
The month of October for me, as well as the majority of athletes I work with, is about getting back into a regular daily training pattern that includes re-adjusting to strength training (I let too much time go by w/o any strength work this summer!) and riding 5+ days per week. November is when my “official” 2018 training kicks off with some testing on the bike, and a highly structured training program including indoor trainer sessions, longer outdoor rides, and a progressive strength training build over the winter months. I’ll dig deeper into both of these training elements in future blog posts (goal is at least 2 posts per month). So stay tuned!!
If you’re training for XC or endurance MTB racing, or even triathlon and want to focus more on your bike this year, the core of this very same training program will become available to you to try for yourself, and following right along with me on your own, in the next 1-2 weeks. If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, take a look at my 2018 Remote Training Team program as something to consider for your 2018 training plan.
Thanks for reading and I hope you decide to follow along for the 2018 season!