Slowing down

From sleeping in a five-star London hotel to a night in the front seat of a rental car, life changes pretty fast when you step out of the spotlight.  It was after Peter and I left London that we found ourselves, at 2am, on the roadside near Annecy, France, with no other choice but to camp out in the Volkswagen Touran.   Not only this.  I went from … more


The here and the now and the magic of it all

‘What’s the reason of your stay’ was the first question asked at customs a few nights ago. I’d just made the trip from Leipzig, Germany. After completing the first three days of the Thuringen Ruhndfahrt stage race, I was ready to make my final trip. The trip to London. To the Olympics. Even on this, my sixth trip to the Games for Canada, I felt an excitement that … more


Herman, the Indian, the bow and the arrow in Italia

Europe is always a trip for the female athlete.  I’m Canadian.  My upbringing in sport is that it’s quite normal that girls play and play hard.  I’ve never in 22 years had anyone tell me I can’t do something on the playing field.  At least not in Canada.  Only when in Europe have I experienced a machoism foreign to me.  I’ve been laughed at in France for racing … more


Buon appetito…sort of…

I always wondered why support staff and athletes eat at separate tables on cycling teams.  It’s a common sight to see the riders huddled around a table, dark circles under the eyes, trying not to eat too much bread before a bland meal is served.  On female cycling teams the vegetables are a coveted part of the meal and salad bars rule.  The staff most often sit at … more


Sweating it out in Italy at the Giro D’Italia

There is a heat wave in Italy.  It was as if the first five days of the Giro D’Italia Donne were raced in a wood burning pizza oven.  Each day it feels like the cook adds more logs to the fire.  It’s like racing in an inferno.  Day #3 the team car dashboard read 49c.  No joke.   The first day of the stage race it was scorching … more


The Giro Donne: It’s an adventure!

I should have known it was going to be one of those days when I opened my eyes to bright lights and two girls sitting on their beds, staring at me and smiling.  It was an odd sensation because I had ear plugs in and thus could only see and not hear.  For an instant I thought what is going on here where am I who are these … more


Riding with Luigi in Italia

Today Ally and I set out for another bicycle adventure in Italy.  After studying the Strava map from yesterday’s ride I felt pretty confident I knew the route to improve upon our surprisingly fun outing.  I had it all planned and got a little cocky I think because after only 5 minutes I had us going the wrong way with no way over the train tracks.  Which was … more


Forza Specialized lululemon!

It’s been since the Exergy Tour in May that I’ve been with the team.  Riding this morning with teammate Ally Stacher reinforced what I felt at Nationals last week:  it’s no fun to ride, or race, alone.  I did my best as the sole Specialized-lululemon rider in the road race in Canada but came up short in the end.  Somewhere on the internet I read that I ‘did … more


Encore en France

Walking to find some lunch in Annecy yesterday it suddenly hit me just how long it had been since I’d been in France.  In my past cycling life, France was the Holland that speed skating became to me.  I was so sick of a decade racing bikes in France just as I  was following a decade on ice in Holland.  I count the years as twelve since my … more


Goodbye and hello…

There’s usually a moment of realization when I leave home for the last time before something big.  Something big in my life the past sixteen years has meant an Olympics.  The awareness that the next time I’ll set foot at home it will all be over is never lost on me.  It’s a feeling of excitement tinged with melancholy.  The latter more pronounced when I leave such a … more

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