Spinning wheels

Hey people, another friendly update coming your way. I’ve done a handful in the past three months, so much to tell! The biggest change has been the addition of cycling into my training. Yes, you’re looking at the proud owner of a new trek domane 2.0. I’ve logged almost 700 miles in less than two months. Can you tell I love it yet? trek-domane-20-triple-2014-road-bike I call him…Andy. Inside joke!

Cycling has become another outlet for me to unleash my demons and bring me back to earth. And the awesome part is I’ve met some great people just riding in groups. At Goodales in Nashua they have groups riding out on a regular basis, so there’s no drought of social gatherings. Learning the ins and outs of group riding has been a blast too. Get this. When you’re riding in a peloton (french word for platoon) everyone carries the same load of work. You ride in a line similar to a congo line or Indian sprints. Each rider takes his turn cutting through the wind at the front while the riders behind sit back and draft with little effort. It’s a fun and interesting system. I now understand why cycling tours are formulaic and strategic. There’s plenty to uncover and learn. So on with the not-so-good news. I’m a crash/injury prone newbie and here’s your evidence:EXP0000 Left collarbone is broken…you should see the other guy

What?! Again? Another injury? I have good excuses. My friend Jack and I were descending a 10% grade traveling about 40mph, when we banked a right turn and an extraordinary gust of wind knocked me from the center of the road to the shoulder in a  matter of seconds. It was one of the moments of shear surprise with absolutely no control. Once my wheels touched gravel – I knew my fate was sealed. The big OH nooo! Sure enough, I blinked and I was laying on the ground. I stumbled to my feet and saw the blood on my leg already reaching my cleats. Frankly, I was relieved it was only scrapes until I began a damage control search and my shoulder felt…out of place.

Long story short, Jack and I rode to the middle of town to the cycling shop to center my front wheel. The owner commented on my shoulder saying he’s seen a lot of broken collarbones and popped shoulders, and that I definitely have one of those. At that moment in time, hearing that something was potentially broken made me groan in disappointment. In the prime of my training?! No way man!

Currently, I’m off the bike for 6 weeks, which is saddening. The good news is running will be happening in less than 3 weeks. Whatever lessens the chance of me getting hurt again I suppose.

I’ve got lots more in store running wise. On June 8th I’ll be racing at Mount Ascutney in Windsor, VT and on the 12th I’ll be doing the Hollis Fast 5k. More to come!

Doors Opening

This is an update on what’s going on over the past week. No, it won’t be a sally sob story about not being able to run. It’s true. I can’t run, not even the treadmill. Currently it’s a waiting game for me to receive a 3d scan on my foot to REALLY see what the problem is. Doctors were on vacation last week sipping egg nog, so I’ll be opening a box of surprise news very soon.

You may ask…Alec, aren’t you going insane not running? And I would answer, I was. I’ve gotten over the fact that running isn’t possible for me with an injury, and that’s ok. It’s taken a lot of guts, complaining, and letting go to admit it. This is what’s best for my body. I don’t want to risk anymore chances of my heel getting worse too. I think it’s the best decision, even though, I’m still cringing!

Now with the positives! So when one door closes, you open another. In the mean time I’ve picked up the guitar again and learned some new songs via youtube. Yes, it doesn’t “replace” running, but it helps the free time pass productively. I’m enjoying it more than I anticipated too. It gives me a chance to be creative and patient with learning something new. Now here’s the big one. I’ve been hatching ideas in my head lately. I’ve come to the conclusion that a running injury could potentially happen again in the future. The question is, how to avoid it? Yes, taking care of yourself works, but what about an alternative when running isn’t working? Brace yourself. Cycling. There. It’s been said.

Cycling is the alternative because it’s still in the endurance sport realm. If a bad day happens and running doesn’t happen, jump on a bike! It’s a good distraction. The great thing is cycling is something fresh and exciting I know absolutely nothing about. It will give me a chance to learn the ins and outs of the technology, techniques, and nutrition. The bike I have my eye on is the Trek Madone 2.1, feast your eyes:

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Beautiful isn’t it? Now, I haven’t had the opportunity to try it because of the weather, but I have a really good feeling about it. It has an aluminum frame and carbon fiber forks for a smoother ride. Only 20 lbs. So light it might float away.

Have you gone outside? It’s cold! In the negatives here in New England. For training as of the moment, I’ve joined a gym to let off some steam. The stationary bike has been my training partner for the past week. He’s ok…a little quiet. In addition, I’ve been doing regular core work. The good news is it’s getting the job done giving me my daily fill. Thank God for the indoors.

I’m excited I’ll have another option to train come springtime. Something to go fast on and explore. What scares me the most is that I’ll enjoy cycling more than running, but I’ve quickly dismissed that thought. Running is a something I’ve put lot of time and effort into. It won’t be leaving me anytime soon.