Sunday, January 17, 2010

Deep Bruises and a PediCure

It's always the ones you least expect that hurt the most.  Sometimes you'll just be cruising along,  pedaling your heart out, feeling the groove, cutting through the day like a wavy carrot slicer and


you're on the ground wondering how your super sonic senses didn't see that tree. 

But this post really isn't about riding a bike, hitting a tree and getting hurt, it's about toenail polish and it's staying power.  Seriously.  I'm not the girl to get regular pedicures so it might not surprise you that one day I looked down and realized my ruby red toenail polish had begun to chip, badly in fact, becoming unsightly.  How did I let it get like this?

I was focused.  I was in the woods moving and grooving, going somewhere... FAST... pedal, pedal, pedal... REALLY FAST... ewe, look at those toes... pedal, pedal, pedal... TOO FAST... ahh, I'll get to it, open toe season is over... pedal, pedal, pedal... SMACK!

While I was looking down at my toes I hit a tree, a BIG tree, like a 200 year old Oak with a trunk the size of a house, smacked it like a bug on a windshield.  It would seem my super sonic senses didn't see it coming, or did they?  I guess sometimes there's no avoiding the tree.  And sometimes hitting the tree and getting banged up is better than the trail that lies ahead.  You may be asking "but what kind of an idiot wears open toed shoes mountain biking?"

So it is, and these are my toes with the reminder of the ruby red polish, faded and almost non-existent.  Today, I'll remove it.  It's time.  This poor polish has seen enough, it's time for a new color.

This polish has seen the demise of a four year relationship, the trials of splitting up a home and a business, job search and relocation, saying goodbye to the best thing I had ever helped build, my hometown, my friends, my family, the loss of a pet, a juicer, and a little bit of faith, a week and a half of close quarters with my father, a painful snowboarding accident and an even more painful haircut.  In the words of the Horse from Ren and Stimpy, "No Sir, don't like it."

This polish has also seen a short, steamy soul shaking love affair although inherently terminal, it's seen the power that comes from knowing that none of these things are any match for my strength, for my resourcefulness, for my creativity, for my ambition, for the love and support of my friends and family, the making of new friends and the relighting of a brilliantly burning happiness that has been dimmed for way, way too long. 

And the best part of the story is the bandages.  Ha, ha, I may be the only person to manage losing a pint of blood by nicking my toe during a pedicure... and sometimes the worst wounds are self inflicted.

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Road Bike Skating

Nothing at all like Road Block Trippin, Road Bike Skating, which makes a much better song in my opinion... road bike skating in the middle of the night... sing it.  How much fun would THAT be?

Ok, yeah, whatever.  The point is, I learned a new trick today.  I'm not exactly sure it is a new trick per se, perhaps just a new application of an old trick.  Road Bike Skating, the act of riding your road bike on hard pack snow melt, is not so unlike riding through gravel, sand, mud, muck, water with who knows what underneath, glacial deposits, jello pudding, split pea soup, marble fields and Bilenky Junkyard Cross style upholstery traps.  The theory is the same.  Best advice I received before my first mtb race... "when you head off into the gravel take your weight off your bars and pedal, pedal, pedal, keep control but let your front wheel float, oh,yeah, and get the hole shot".

So it goes like this... loosen up, put your weight back on the seat a little, ease your grip, engage your core, switch to a lower gear, crank the crap out of those pedals and be ready to throw some knee out for balance when you get a little off.  And DON'T freak out!  It might feel like you are out of control but as long as you are moving forward... the world will keep spinning, Elvis will never die and bicycles will outnumber cars on the roads in 2010!  Well, you know what I mean.  Life is good.

Your front wheel won't be as likely to catch on the unknown when it is "floating" without weight.  With your weight on the back wheel you'll have traction to plow through anything.  And you MUST pedal, stopping in the middle will make you more frustrated than a two year old trying to get candy out of a diabetic Nunn.

Fortunately, this is a skill that I don't remember having to learn, I think it is part instinct.  Sometimes that is all you need.  Blowing snot rockets and launching a spit ball that doesn't slime the side of your face and get caught on your earring, well those are NOT instinct, at least not in my book.

Stay tuned... adventure number next one... The Bruise Report goes under cover to learn the dirty little secrets of rolling snot rockets and power expectorating.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Run Beering

A beer run is normally defined as the activity required to obtain beer. In this instance however beer came before the run. From here on out this activity should perhaps be referred to as run beering just to avoid any confusion.

So, now that we have that cleared up... today I went for a run beer, a run after beer. It has been a long time since I enjoyed a beer in the middle of the day, (what's with that? I know, right!) And since I've committed to this "racing thing" (bike racing that is) I felt it necessary to get some sort of miles in.

I remembered a time back in my early 20's (eons ago) when I would hit happy hour with friends, drink a couple of beers and head out for a run. So, why not, right? I had to find some way to escape the end of a week long visit from my father. Who would never, I'll have you know, run beer. Beer run, yes, but NEVER run beer. That was of course all the more reason to go. After all the greatest thing I learned this week is what I do NOT want to be when I grow up. I mean this is the man who taught me to enjoy the outdoors, to push the limits and try new things... the very reason I moved to beautiful Colorado.  But now he is content to take pictures of the beautiful Rocky Mountains from the comfort of a car seat.  When did he stop living?  Ahh, shake it off, he leaves tomorrow. 

What I failed to remember about my youthful run beering was that in those days I was drinking beer water aka Mic Light, blech! I mean if it's under 6% why bother? 

So, two Gordons and a half a Velvet Elvis and I was... should I say... having trouble tying my shoes? Hummm, yeah, perfect time to hit the icy trails!

And, in the end, it was... I ran fast, I ran hard, I launched over puddles and kept my footing on the ice. I didn't think about where I was going or how long I had been gone, if I was keeping a good pace or if my heartrate was on target. My only goal was to stay out of the creek.  I just plugged into the The Budos Band and ran... and had a damn good time doing it.  And that my friends is run beering.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Back to the Bruise

The pain inflicted from one single day on a snowboard is unreasonable. But even more unreasonable is the thought that I just might try it again. Since it has become apparent that my ass was not officially broken, just severely bruised (go figure). My first thought was OMG I won't be able to ride my bike, you might as well cut off my feet! Didn't even think about the fact that I might not be able to walk or sit. And lucky me, I could ride my bike, actually, that was the ONLY thing I could do without serious agony. Standing, running, walking and sitting, hummm, yeah, that all hurt. So, in the end relief was short but sweet!
Board is waxed and ready.