Alright. So at home, it’s 3 PM. Here in Germany, it’s 11 PM and I am wide awake, so I’ll make good use of my time before counting little Rotwilds (translation: Red Deer) instead of sheep to get to sleep.
I’m doing what all good little pros are supposed to do. Sit in bed wearing compression socks and drinking lots of water. I wonder how many days I can keep THAT up
Today was my first full day in St. Wendel. I like this little town from what I’ve seen. The hardest part about racing here is NOT walking around all day long. I want to walk up and down a bunch of streets and snap photos of all the old, white buildings and go laugh at some of the Euro fashion shops, but I am attempting to conserve energy. My trip to Germany has been fun so far! I’m actually really lucky I came here back in May, because now I kind of understand how things work although my German could use some serious work! Simple things suddenly don’t become quite as simple… but I like a challenge. I’m extremely lucky because my team – Topeak Ergon, is based in Germany and I have the best people in the world supporting me, and setting an example for me (my European teammates are all top-notch, world class athletes, and it shows). I feel like a freshman entering high school again… inexperienced and maybe a little embarrassed around them. They are super nice, but this is my first time racing in Europe. Translation – amateur hour? But then I give myself the pep talk…the one that I appreciate from all my facebook/twitter supporters. “Sonya, you deserve to be here. You earned this. Believe in yourself.” Intimidation factor for me is admittedly higher than I’d like, but it’s exciting. It’s a whole new experience. Morale factor is high. I’m excited and extremely fortunate just to be here.
Back in May, I got to fully take in German culture meaning lots of pig eating, and sampling a variety of beers. Today, I realized I haven’t had a real German on this trip. I am not freely slurping one of my favorite beverages, but I decided that changing my ways just because it’s a world championship isn’t the way to go, so I finally enjoyed a German beer! and make it DARK (dunkel)
Just one though… and early in the evening and not right after a ride. See? I do have some tact.
Let me backtrack. This morning, I enjoyed another lovely german breakfast. The bread is so good…as is the jams, fruit, muesli, yogurt, and various meats and cheese. I normally don’t ride a lot before a big race, but I needed to inspect the course. The race is 2 different loops totaling 107K or 67 miles. A lot of it is road, doubletrack, or mowed fields but there is some little bits of singletrack to get my blood boiling with excitement. Short little bites of it. There is some climbing too… sharp, short little bites of that too…enough to zap your energy. Enough for you to say, “man, my legs feel like crap from something, and my heart rate is really low, and wow, I feel like shit today.”
I enjoyed the scenery today like I said I would. It was very Oregon-like. Lush, humid, mossy, and really muddy from the rain. I even had some company for half the ride – our team mechanic Larry who is FAST! zooooom!
Oregon has though banana slugs I posted a photo of a few weeks back. Germany has these bright orange slugs…everywhere. It’s kind of fun!
I didn’t enjoy how my body felt. I have found out that jetlag really takes a toll on the legs. I had zero power and could barely get my HR out of zone 2 or “riding along” heart rate, but the effort felt much harder, so I tried not to push too hard. Tomorrow is a new day. I drank a lot of water today, ate a lot of food, and laid in bed for the afternoon. Hopefully that will help because I know what my race beast looks like on a good day, I saw him last weekend on a training ride and he is mean and hungry. I want him to appear, foaming at the mouth on race day. Patience and faith that they will come around. Fingers crossed. If not, Sunday will be… not a great day. haha. They will feel better.
Pics from the pre-ride. I rode the 2nd lap of the course.
The wind generators hovering 100s of feet above the course are so cool and poetic.
and huge..that is a person up there.
Mowed bumpy fields….
Wheat. Wheat thins?
Get it, Larry!
and muddy messes to clean up when the ride was over.
“your face is a muddy mess!” My face, I mean… Your face jokes, like “that’s what she said” jokes…do not get old. I probably rode too long today… 3.5 hours but if that doesn’t get the blood flowing in and out of my veins, I don’t know what will!
I met up with Krista and Todd Park. Krista is the other woman from the USA racing.
Teammates? shake and bake! Does that blow your mind?
I got my USA kit today. It means a lot to me to wear this kit. It’s something that every racer dreams of.
Tomorrow, our little crew will be joined by the rest of the team and support crew. I can’t wait! I’ve enjoyed hanging out with Lars, Sally, and Dave!
And a few from town right outside our hotel.
Off to bed. Schlafen. Sleep. G’night!