I remember in my last, peak long ride of 110 miles promising myI remember in my last, peak long ride of 110 miles promising myself that the next time around that I would find a way to include others in my training. Success can be measured in many ways, and while last year I was successful in hitting my "A" goal, the one thing lacking was a sense of deep engagement in sport that allowed me to get to know others and also give back to the sport I love.self that the next time around that I would find a way to include others in my training. Success can be measured in many ways, and while last year I was successful in hitting my "A" goal, the one thing lacking was a sense of deep engagement in sport that allowed me to get to know others and also give back to the sport I love.
In February, I also joined the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA), thanks to the nudge of a local fellow triathlete. FCA has a great presence at races across Virginia and is also active in giving back to the community by volunteering at various local races. Though I'm still coming to know all that the organization involves, I'm eager to learn more in the coming months and network with other local FCA members!
In other news, I am pleased to share that I now a part of a local women's cycling team, VeloRiot. VeloRiot is team that is not only committed to providing a supportive and encouraging environment for young girls and women cyclists, they are committed to giving back to the community through maintenance clinics, hosting of group rides, mentorship, etc. The team is full of stud athletes that I know will help me to not only find greater engagement and enjoyment in the sport, but improvela my personal performance as well.
This year, I have already made a few changes that I am excited about and that I think will be key in supporting my goals. For one, I can not stress enough the importance of putting goals in writing, revisiting them frequently and enlisting in support to make them happen. I am thankful that I did just that and for the support of my always awesome coach in reinforcing the goal while keeping overall training objectives in mind. Thanks coach!!
This past weekend was filled with cycling fun, and has reminded me of the many reasons why I love my community and all the athletes I've come to know through my engagement in sport. On Saturday, I participated in the Wilderness Road Ride, organized by and benefiting our local FCA chapter, and couldn't have been more pleased with the outcome. Yes, it was good to put in some extra long training miles on the bike (60!), yes, it was great to be feeling good after a long injury setback, but even more so it was refreshing and motivating to be out there doing what I love in the company of other cyclists and triathletes with similar passions and goals!
On Sunday, the husband and I served as the leaders of rest stop #2 for the Mountains of Misery Century Ride (and Double Metric... crazy folks!) It was a lot of work, but again, well worth the effort to be able to serve the many riders who went on the complete the entirety of the ride. The ride is not only a great display of athleticism on the part of its many participants, but a great display of community as well when it comes to the teamwork and coordination of many unique roles required to successfully host such an event. I feel blessed to have such quality events in our region, and to live in a community that rallies to support athletes in such a manner!
This past weekend has left me a but exhausted, yet filled to the brim with excitement for what's to come this season. I am getting stronger each week post-injury moving in the direction of quality training again. Soon I hope to join in with the local swim group once they move to the outside pool, yet another opportunity to get out and train with others. While I still have plenty of challenges ahead of me this season, it's a great feeling knowing that I'm moving both in the direction of improved fitness, but greater engagement in the sport and community as well :)
Thanks for reading, and be sure to check back later this week for a special belated birthday and blog-iversary post and my first giveaway!!
Kristen Chang is Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics (CSSD) and endurance athlete residing in southwest Virginia alongside her husband and dog. Through this blog she aims to share favorite fueling recipes, general wellness and sport nutrition tips and stories from her athletic endeavors.
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