5/19/08

Down but not out

Wask gets the 300th post...

Being injured isn’t exactly a fun situation in any circumstance, let alone being injured as a rider. The recovery time is a rough period, involving a lot of sitting on one’s ass. You tend to reach a certain point where there’s nothing left to look at on the internet, and nothing else to watch on TV...When I broke my platella about seven weeks ago I had no idea just how bored a person could get. Being removed from the familiarity of riding a bike as an avid cyclist is often more painful than the injury itself, but I found out along the way that I could still enjoy the sport, and even participate in something I thought I had to be riding my bike to enjoy.

That sort of led me to find alternative ways of being involved. I began to take some little sojourns as I healed a sort of way to escape the monotony of limping around school all day, only to come home and occupy my free time with activities that become tedious and boring to an active person.

This past weekend I took a trip up to the Yee-Ha race at Massanutten, Virginia. A race I had hoped to ride in, now became a chance for me to spectate, something I really hadn’t done prior. All the races I had gone to up to that point I was actually involved in, never really giving me the chance to experience the other side of the event. I limped down the entire trail, hung out in the pits, slowed down the lifts, and took pictures of the riders the whole weekend.

And as cheesy and trite as it may sound, I sort of came to realize that the sport isn’t just about riding your bike. I noticed after this weekend that having a good time with friends enjoying our silly little sport doesn’t mean I have to be riding.

I’ve come to realize that downhill, and generally cycling for the most part, manifests itself in more ways than just riding and racing, I’m only about 2 years into the game, but more and more the “community” becomes increasingly attractive to me as I continue to involve myself.

The situation is a bit of an ongoing epiphany. At the risk of sounding like a self help book, or a motivational speaker, my injury was a necessary departure from my regular contribution. That departure was something that allowed me to step back and see the bigger picture. In the end though, I can’t wait to get back on a bike; I’m Whistler bound

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