I didn't really want my first ProCycling diary to be about my ankle, but then I had the realisation I could get all the explaining out the way, focusing on future adventures in my upcoming entries.
So for the those of you that haven't already read about it: back in August during the inaugural Women’s USA Pro Challenge I broke my ankle. As I later learnt, after my first consultation with the specialist’s, the Talus is a tricky bone to break.
It was a silly and utterly avoidable crash, but one that would leave it’s mark definitively on my season. In the aftermath, it took a while to get used to my lack of independence and mobility. I’m pretty stubborn when it comes to accepting help, especially when it’s teammates having to run around for me.
My Mum and Dad had also already booked a two week road-trip culminating at the World Championships in Richmond. It is rare I get to spend quality time with my parents. So after hearing I wouldn't require surgery, I decided instead of flying back to England, that I would hang out for three weeks in America awaiting their arrival. We managed to take in five states during a day and the entire ‘Blue Ridge Parkway’!
Fastforward a few months and my new team for 2016, Team Canyon-SRAM, were holding their training camp in early December. By this point I was more than ready to become a bike rider again. I had set my heart on joining an easy cafe ride or Zwift session with my teammates, but ultimately that wasn't to be. I see myself as a glass half full kind of person, positive and optimistic. So going in to each CT scan in the months prior, I would always have some hope and excitement, keeping the belief that I would walk crutch free out of the hospital that day. Unfortunately in the end it took five months and five scans for that to become a reality, but eventually, I got there.
I have gained a whole new appreciation of what bike racing really means to me over this period. In the past I would sometimes question whether I truly loved Cycling or simply the glamour of it all. That doubt has now been firmly removed from my mind. Putting my leg over my bike for the first time a few days ago was a very special moment and one I will never forget.