My first track experience was unforgettable. Terrifying yet exhilarating. These scary experiences are both enjoyable and rewarding. Track racing is one of the scariest things I’ve been able to overcome; the fear of no brakes, the fear of crashing, the fear from coming back after breaking your back and the hassle of traveling alone. Here I am; about to combine all of those things in one trip.
After track nationals I broke my back during a co-ed Madison in Michigan. Two riders crashed in front of me and there I was, trapped without brakes, inevitably heading for certain collision.
Getting injured is tough, but the ripple effect it had was even harder. I now had to rebuild after coming off my win at Nationals. Coming from the best shape of my career to being excluded from USA Cycling selection camps due to my broken back. It was hard. It made me reevaluate my cycling career. Then to find out my race team had folded, I was crushed. Bad things happen in threes…
The biggest lesson I have learned through cycling: move forward. You can plan everything, try to control every variable, but life is going to happen. Things are going to come up. What matters is how you deal with the unexpected. How I planned my season and how it ended up are night and day. Every setback creates opportunity. It is matter of you choice to go forward despite it or if you let it become your stopping point.
Here I am, bouncing back in Europe. A week away from my first race since my injury. It is scary, but I am grateful that I am able to move forward again here in Belgium. Next up: training for the Bremen Six Day next week, followed by the Berlin Six Day two weeks later. You can follow my European cycling adventure as it unfolds on here.