Jess: "You know what would feel better than a drink right now? Going for a spin." Me: "There is a 0% chance that I'm riding a bike now." Jess: "I know. That's why I'm driving us to the bar."
For my birthday last October, my dear friend Ivy gave me a necklace: It was more than just a piece of jewelry; it was a reminder and a life philosophy. Get shit done. Keep going. Don't let anything stop you. There was a moment last November when I almost forgot that. Everything felt broken and insurmountable. I sat alone in my apartment in Seattle and wept at the mess I'd made of my life. In that instant, I couldn't figure out how to begin untangling the wreckage of an entirely derailed life plan. But then I got up off the couch and did. One step at a time, one day at a time, with the help of my tirelessly loving family and friends. I got shit done. Now it's time for the next step. I just left home to go on the road for the season. I often write something here ...continue reading.
What a year! I will forever look back on 2016 as the year that overflowed with joyful moments like slamming into the ground repeatedly, getting my heart pulverized, and finding out we'd elected Trump. What a time to be alive! And yet, in the wake of a year of sometimes crippling defeats, I have never felt more alive, excited, and ready to plunge ahead. So many things happened in the last 12 months. We launched Hagens Berman | Supermint and had an incredible season of highs and lows, victories and learning experiences, and a roller coaster of thrills that took the team all over North America and to Italy for the Giro Rosa. (Meanwhile, I went to Canada. So that's basically my 2016 life choices in a nutshell.) It still feels surreal, yet we're now well underway towards our second season. In my own cycling career, I raced hard, crashed harder, stubbornly kept ...continue reading.
You know those nights when you go to bed and nothing happens? You lay there and lay there and eventually start to grow moss but sleep doesn't come. That was me on Saturday night. After several hours of chewing my pillow in exasperation, I resorted to reading until sleep finally came. When my alarm went off at 6am so I could volunteer at the Capital Cross Classic, I had been asleep for less than four hours and woke up ready to punch somebody in the face. My beloved 14-year-old dog was the my first interaction of the day. Okay. No punching. So I got up feeling exhausted and cranky, put on fifteen layers of clothing (how many pairs of leggings equals one pair of actual pants?), and headed to the race. I began my volunteer duties, caught up with friends I hadn't seen in months, and was bordering on hypothermic ...continue reading.
It's been a week and I survived. When everything fell apart, there were honestly moments when I didn't want to survive. I didn't want to have to live with the pain until it finally passed, and felt hugely overwhelmed by the work of dismantling a life on one side of the country and restarting on the other side. The last thing you want to think about when your heart is obliterated and pounding through your veins like broken glass is "I hope there are enough boxes in the building's recycling bin for me to pack up my kitchen." (There was definitely a moment when I climbed halfway into one of those huge rolling dumpsters to grab the last empty box at the bottom. I can laugh about this now.) In the past week, I've ended my life in Seattle and moved-cross country, settled into my room at Chez Bayer, and spent ...continue reading.
Something about what he said stuck out, like a nubby loose thread on an otherwise tightly knit sweater. I couldn't let it go, poking and fussing at it. I never expected that with a single tug, the entire thing would unravel. A week ago, I was in Korea riding through the mountains. My life had been shifting and changing dramatically for the previous six months, but I loved where it was going. I was in love with a man and his little girl, running the team but stepping away from the obligations of training and racing, planning for grad school and to become a mother. I had finally relaxed my rules enough to start truly living every day. Whatever unknown remained, I knew it was going to be exciting. A week later, I am driving to Virginia to live with my parents. My life is packed into the same car that ...continue reading.