2011: stage five

Hill Sprint

6km, 3300ft ascent

Well, I don't really know where to start.  We have not had internet access in any guest houses since now and it hasn't been convenient to pack up and head out to add our posts.  Not to mention, this journey is exhausting and just taking care of my recovery, some time for Carter and getting ready for the next day has been all I can seem to fit in.

We just finished Stage 5 - the 6km, 3300 foot hill sprint stage from Switzerland.  It made for a hard day, as we just completed 4 of the biggest stages, not only of this years's Transalpine Race, but what they claim is the hardest is their 6yr history.  I woke up with some well used legs and sore knees for the first time.  Sarah and I fit in a warm up jog because the stage started uphill right from the center of town.  My calfs burned 1/2 way up the climb and I just tried not to stop and to push myself up as best I could.  I hit a moments today where I could feel the legs have reached their max and no push would make them go faster.  I think the next 3 days will bring the start to some more serious suffering.

'Mountain MacLeod' on the other-hand climbed like she was fresh and just set a pace in front of me.  We didn't realize it until after our stage that teams could start together and split up and they would take the difference of our times.  Had we known that - Sarah could have set out and made up some time for us.  Ce la vie!  We made it up in 1hr 7min and had a beer and pasta at the top.  We finished in 17th o/a today, I think - but it wasn't a deal breaker for us as only minutes were lost at best.  And despite some solid stages, we are competing for a certain finish and continue to run for the experience and make it as fun as possible.

It is nice to have some time off today.  Each day we have finished late, showered, stretched, went back to the pasta part and not home until 8:30pm - 9:00pm.  Bed and up to do it all over again.


Aside from the race Europe is amazing!  Our guesthouses have been perfect (thanks Michael and Suzanne) and we are eating very well.  So much cheese, meat, gelato and pasta.  The boys are keeping busy and getting out to hike or Trent is fitting in some runs early in the morning or afterwards - but they have mostly been busy looking after us.  You have no idea how hard it is to be support for a stage race until you have done it... I am grateful for my boys and they are doing an outstanding job.  Packing up every morning, unpacking at the next stage town.  Getting food.  Grabbing our recovery food and clothes and having it ready at the finish.  Trent has been taping up my feet every morning and cleaning the cow shit off my shoes at the end of the stages or washing our clothes.  Carter has been patient and excited and ran in with us on day 2.  Handing me Canadian balloons (thanks Urness') and getting us food etc...

Tomorrow we leave Switzerland for Italy.  The weather is suppose to be nice and warm again and we are told we have some of the nicest views to come yet!