2013 ended up being a season of growth for me as a person and athlete. It started with a midseason decision in june to train for the Beaver Creek Sprint Xterra. I have never swam before this past year so I had a huge amount of work in store for me. This combined with my decision to buy a craigslist wetsuit the week of the race was a pretty good statement of my expectations for this race. I left the water in 63rd position but ended up racking my bike in 5th overall. This combined with a top 10 run placed me in first for the women and a top 15 result overall but most importantly I had a blast! I ended up completing 2 other xterra events with decent results but more importantly found a new passion and room to grow as an athlete for the 2014 season.
The cross season started out a little slowly after training for xterras during the summer. I ended up back east with a top 10 UCI result in nittany but quickly discovered I needed to go home and put the specific training time in for cross. At home, I quickly realized the wealth of resources available to me in Denver when I start training and working with Pete Weber and the boulder junior cycling team. Not only did I gain some skills from working with this group but also learned how much I enjoy working with juniors and mentoring in the sport of cycling. I noticed that I might especially have an influence with young women and what cycling means to them. This was my biggest lesson learned in 2013 and shows how the meaning of sport can evolve with everyone as time progresses. I was able to finish 7th at a C1 event in the mud at cincinnati this year due to all the help from my boulder friends as well as top 10 results in St. Louis with strong races. However, I ended up getting bronchitis mid season on my way to Kentucky and Iowa City which dragged on till I was able to come home and heal. I finished the season with a ton of strong training only to end it with a rib fracture in my Master's race in Boulder. A disappointing end to the season but still maintained a top 20 ranking in the pro cross standings.
All these lessons learned have produced a solid base for my 2014 season where I plan to compete in the national Xterra scene as a professional this year, continue mentoring local juniors through working with the Golden High School Cycling Team, and continue with plans to complete another UCI racing season with Van Dessel Cycles.