words by Crystal Lambert
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Since weâ€™ve last been in touch I feel as though I have been sore each and every single day.Â Sore because I am in the throes of training for the SingleTrack 6 event happening from July 26 â€“ 31, 2014, a six day stage race with a mix of xc riding, panoramic vistas and enduro descents from Kananaskis, AB to Revelstoke, BC.
When I first decided I wanted to do a race like this, I wanted to do it as part of a team. A bit of background – Last spring I participated in the Toonie Training series put on by the Fraser Valley Mountain Bike Association (FVMBA) with a friend. Every other Saturday we were at the trail head, ready to ride for 730am. We didnâ€™t decide to necessarily ride together as these rides were generally like a race, every person for themselves, but ended up doing so because it made us faster. When I was hurting, she would get me going and vice versa. During an early spring xc race, we ended up together again during the final few kms and took turns leading the other to keep the pace high. It was such a great experience that it made me want to do a stage race as a team.
Sounds great right, but who would be my teammate? My go-to riding partner already had another plan in motion. Sadly, I would have to find another option.
Back to being sore (did I mention that Iâ€™m sore every.single.day?) -Â Yes, in general this because I am preparing for the longest bike ride of my life but itâ€™s specifically because this lovely little lady named Monika Marx is the one whipping me into shape. Anyone who has had the opportunity to work out with her knows, itâ€™s a bit sadistic. But in a really fabulous way! One out of my 3 goals she asked me to write down last fall has been achieved (within the given time). I can now do a full body weight, dead hang chin-up! Pretty dang awesome right? But not as awesome as this little piece of news:
Monika is going to be my team mate for the ST6! I am not aloneâ€¼!
What does this mean? This means we will have to ride within 2 minutes of each other for the duration of the event. The organizers of the ST6 recommend finding a team mate who is close to you in ambition level and riding abilities.
Ummm, well, Monika is not quite (ok, definitely not) my equal when it comes to riding abilities. She is a professional trainer, a certified mountain bike instructor and basically a shredder extraordinaire. BUTâ€¦ we are very close in ambition level and this is a great part of life right? Ambition and having the ability to follow those ambitions.
I think we will be great team mates and learn a lot from each other along the way. She will learn patience (and maybe some satisfaction at how far she has helped me come) and I will learn to be more courageous (she canâ€™t wait for me to walk everything). And who doesnâ€™t want to be more patient and/or courageous?
The Muddbunnies encourage and welcome female riders of all experience and skill levels to join them in getting down and dirty. Come on, ride like a girl!