Friday, October 26, 2007

End of the Season

This has been an interesting year. The season really started back in November 1st of 2006 when I decided that I would race this year with the goal of participating in the Portuguese National Time Trial Championships. After 11 years of not racing at the pro level it was an insane goal but it was the kind of goal that I needed to be able to focus on getting back into shape and loose the extra weight I still had. I started by hiring Max Testa and Nanna Meyer at TOSH in Salt Lake City to help me with my training and nutrition. I started 2006 at 190 pounds and by November I was down to 165. 25 pounds is a lot but I was still too heavy for a cyclist. By the time my first race rolled around in February I was down to 160 and by the end of the season I managed to get to 155. Now it's the end of October and training for the new season starts in 2 weeks and I am at 150 pounds. 5 more to go or is it 10 I forget. The goal is to reach team camp at 145 pounds.

When I stopped racing back in 1996 I never tought that I would return to racing at this level. At the time I decided to stop racing and take advantage of a scholarship I had to Fordham and keep the promise that I had made to myself when I was seventeen that if by the age of 21 I wasn't on a major pro team then I would stop racing and go to school. At the time I didn't have much interest in racing for an American pro team nor a Portuguese pro team. My goal and dream was the big leagues. This was the time's of Banesto, Once, Rabobank, Castorama that's where I wanted to be. It wasn't to be. In hindsight it was the best thing that could have happened to me.

Now I have little interest in racing for a big team and am instead intrigued by racing in the US and Portugal. I am happy to have the opportunity to race for Bissell next year. They had an incredible season as Priority Health - Bissell in 2006 and is built around an incredibly talented Time Trialist named Ben-Jacques Maynes. I did the Tour of Virginia with them as a guest rider and did a few other races for Bicycling where they were present. They always seemed like a great group of guys (although I am pretty sure Teddy King yelled at me once for spriting for 30th or something) and like the better teams in the US always seemed nice to everybody in the Peloton. Something that some of the smaller pro teams don't do.

So this is it for my first entry. I'll upload some pictures from the season and look forward to updating this blog on a regular basis as my training and season progresses.