Saturday, January 05, 2008

Top 10 of 2007

Wow, another 365 days in the books, another year of adventures and another year of great friends, family and memories. I am stoked for 2008 and extremely optimistic for all the unbelievable adventures and people that lie ahead. However, before looking too far ahead I should first tip a forty to 2007. Although this was a challenging year for me there were still many great experiences that deserve commemorating. Without further adieu I give you my top ten of 2007:

10. Easter Day swim in Lake Washington. Some find a cold water swim therapeutic. I found it downright asinine. Bundled in wetsuit, neoprene caps, booties and gloves I managed a 30 minute swim in 49 degree water with three friends. Ouch! I can’t wait for Easter in 2008!

9. I can walk! On February 19th I took my first steps (without assistance of a walker or crutches) almost 4 months after breaking the femoral neck in my left leg. I still walk funny, but that’s my swagger, my street cred!

8. Bamboo forest run, Maui, Hawaii. In late July I went to Hawaii with JP for some beautiful R&R. It also marked the return to running for me. Sloppy, ugly and in general discombobulating, my running was back and it was absolutely beautiful!

7. Haleakala climb, Maui, Hawaii. In addition to my new found running prowess, JP and I also road our bikes to the summit of the stunning 10,023’ volcano. The sights and smells of the climb were numbing in beauty and the descent was white knuckle, insanity with 30-40 mph winds trying to push me off the switchbacks.

6. 24 Hour Racing. I had a wonderful experience racing with two random groups of racers at the 24 Hours of Spokane in May and 24 Hours of Moab in October. In both races I had never met any of my teammates, but in both cases I lucked out and met a wonderful group of people with a passion for life and riding their bikes.

5. A return to tri’s. In late September I stepped back into the world of road triathlons, competing in the Black Diamond Sprint tri. I had only been running (very sporadic) for 7 weeks and was just hoping not to embarrass myself. After a lackluster swim, I threw down a decent bike leg and hung on for the run for a solid 2nd place age group and 13th overall.

4. Victory on the bike. Late June marked my return to mountain bike racing at the Indie Series Race in Winthrop, WA. My goal was to race solid and hopefully finish in the top 10. I did 9 spots better and won the race. After being heckled and called a sandbagger for racing in the Sport class I will be moving to Expert in 2008. Let the suffering begin.

3. Adventure Racing Victory. 2007 marked a year of “returns”, as it seemed my broken leg caused a long enough lapse in competition that each sport I entered seemed like a return to it…you know, huge PR events, media, fans, kissing babies, etc. I hooked up with my MerGeo.com teammates Matt, Murray and Yumay for the Challenge the Port Sprint Race in Port Angeles. My teammates rocked the house and we took home top honors in the four hour race.

2. Endurance Mtn Bike Racing 101. For my 33rd birthday I went to Park City with my buddy TMH for the Endurance 100K mountain bike race. This would be my introduction into endurance solo mountain bike racing. After 70+ miles, over 10,000’ of climbing I finished on the podium in 3rd place. SICK!

1. Friends, Family and Harley. I can not thank my family enough for the love and support they provide for me. My Mom, Dad, Brother and his family are solid and I wouldn’t be were I am today without them. 2007 was another year of amazing friends, both old and new friends. You rock! And last, Harley, my fluff ball of a cat that is scared of his own shadow, but provides a toasting foot warmer on cold days!