Right now I hurt a lot. I feel like I am at least 20 years older than I actually am, and that feels old!
After an untimely stupid, careless crash hands first into some rocks a few days ago, I am now carrying around a super bruised and swollen left pinky, as well as the usual scratches and bruises that happen when you get tangled up with a bike, rocks and lantana.
Any crash which involves injury is unfortunate and unwanted, especially when it coincides with an upcoming race day, which unfortunately was the case for me this weekend. Not wanting to miss out on racing my first away Gravity Enduro race for the season, I pretended my hand wasn’t hurting and squeezed my fat little hand into my glove, and raced.
I focused on not focusing on my hand and telling myself it wasn’t hurting, all the while it was. I successfully negotiated two out of the six stages until disaster struck on stage 3 and I stupidly clipped my pedal on a log, and over the bars I went at great speed. I added a cut elbow, numerous scratches and a bruise the size of my head on my thigh to my injury collection.
Now at this point, I could have said, stuff this, this is way too hard and I hurt too much to be bothered continuing on. But, being a quitter isn’t me and after all, it was only skin and thankfully no bones were involved, so I wiped away the blood and continued on.
Although my thigh was now hurting more than my hand and I now had to shift my focus onto not focusing on how much it hurt, I sucked it up. Knowing how much I would hate myself if I quit, I finished the remaining stages and to my surprise came a respectable 4th, against some extremely talented elite women riders.
Now my point in writing this article is that things are not always going to be easy, especially when it comes to mountain biking. I can go for months without the slightest stack or injury, and then all of a sudden I will have a run of the stupidest stacks and then end up looking worse-for-wear for weeks at a time. To me, that’s all part of learning and pushing yourself to get better. No pain without gain, so they say.
Mountain biking is a sport where you are going to have body parts that are occasionally covered in bruises, scratches, scars and sometimes breaks. It’s inevitable if you are pushing yourself.
To me, that’s all part of this crazy addictive sport that I love. If you’re not crashing then you are not trying, and at the end of the day if you still have a smile on your face from riding your bike then all the pain is worth it. Mountain bikers don’t give up!
By Jodi Newton – Pushys Sponsored Athlete