Archive for July, 2007
Touching down at Charles de Gaule airport in Paris seems to give me the same feeling every time, a feeling of what lies ahead of me this time round, and like every other time there is a great unknown. Though now I feel quite settled in
It is a great lifestyle, the life of a professional cyclist, though it does require a lot of sacrifices. Leaving family and friends for long periods of time isn’t always easy and this is why having those goals in place is important. For any athlete during phases of rehab like I have and am still going through there will always be days where the motivation sways. Days where your goal of returning to top form or a race win seem so far away and so difficult to achieve, and its these days where must gain strength from and just look at your days or weeks goal, and forget about the end goal as you can change nothing at that present time.
Rehab can often feel like a lonely struggle to an athlete as well, an it is up to the athlete to put in the hard work to get back to their original state, but the support and services available to top athletes these days can really make the job at hand seem much more achievable. I would like to thank all the people who have helped me so far as without you I would not be writing from France so soon. To Graham Bunn, Paul Holloway, Brendan Cameron, Paul Kennedy, Criss Strange and of course Mum and Dad thank you all very much for your time and effort.
As I arrived in town here in Albi so did Le Tour de France, the world’s biggest sporting event and what a traveling circus it is. I met with my team that night as their hotel was just down the road, and the feeling of looking at it from the outside knowing what it feels like to be a rider on the inside was one of respect for these guys who are out there battling on their bikes for 3 weeks in a row. I went to catch up with Thomas Lovkvist (a Swedish rider on FDJ) at his room. He came to the door shirt off as it had been pushing 30 degrees that day and that sight said it all, skinny drawn face, tan lines resembling day and night, ribs protruding under the skin, but still smiling as he enjoyed the comforts of his hotel room and not his bike seat. It hasn’t been the best tour ever for FDJ, but just to finish a Grand Tour is an achievement in itself.
As for my form, I managed to roll out a 4hr ride yesterday which was a good feeling, though I sure felt it this morning as I struggled out of bed. My leg is coping well with the load and I hope to start pushing it up even more in the next few days. I will post my upcoming program soon so you can follow my progress back into the racing.
I am sorry to all of you who have been waiting for an update from me, it has been a busy time but I am back to work now and I will make sure my updates arrive on your screen more often from now on.