As I start to get excited for my Ride #2 on the RTCC calendar of events, I am also noticing the other activities of my fellow team mates. 15 of the Vision Crusaders are riding in Sydney - 14 of us are from interstate. We are now talking daily to coordinate flights, taxi transfers, accommodation, dining options, support crew, what Black Milk leggings everyone is wearing and what colour nails the girls will have. (For the record - I am awaiting the surprise delivery from Black Milk Clothing, and my nails are Fluro Pink for October - National Breast Cancer month) We also share the up's and down's of fundraising .. given this is the only way we get to ride!
The true essence of team is on constant display as we all try to help one another out.
Beyond this, my other team in Liv/giant is also displaying hype in the ranks as our sisters all start preparing for events taking place this same weekend.
Jessica Douglas - who will be defending her dual World Championship title at the WEMBO 24 hour Solo MTB Championship in Canberra. Yes - Jess will race her Mountain Bike for 24 hours ... even after almost 18 months I still can't get my head around that one!
Kacey Willoughby, Catherine Thiele, Georgie Camakaris and Kristy Craft - all heading to Hawaii for Ironman (or should that be IronChick!) These girls will do a 180km bike ride ... after they swim 3.8km in the ocean and before they complete a 42km run! And they will all probably do it in under 10 hours.
And we can add to this the girls who will be participating in the Shipwreck Coast - National Road Series race - notably Nicole Whitburn and all the girls who are out training for other events coming up in the next few months. That is right people, cycling / tri season is upon us!
My Melbourne based RTCC team Fighting Back is also getting very excited with a lot of first timers ready to plunge into their first serious ride. Like me 12 months ago, this is the first taste of a cycling event they will have. And as a co Team Captain, I am doing what I can to calm the nerves and reassure everyone that they will be OK!
Today I read an article posted on Facebook by the one and only Jess Douglas. 7 things Outstanding Leaders do Differently. Have a read!! And it got me thinking about how far I have come in the last 12 months. Number 4 stuck in my mind.
4. They act with courage despite having fearWith the help of the powerful leaders around me, I have faced my fears. I have displayed courage but most of all I have believed in myself. It doesn't make the fear disappear. But self belief has been the one thing that has changed my life. Why else would I have thought it was possible to raise $12,500 individually and ride 1000kms in RTCC events alone this year. (OK - I have not actually achieved either yet, but I will!)
So here I am, about to appear on the starting line in 10 more sleeps. And I stand on the same line as my sisters. We will all await the starting signals and we will head off on an endurance test matched perfectly with our level of dedication for the sports that we love so much. I will ride, not race, through the suburbs of Sydney. Jess will race though the singletrack of Mt Stromlo and Kacey, Catherine, Georgie and Kristy will be covering 225kms of swimming, riding and running - in Hawaii!
And right behind all of us will be our teams who got us there. Our support crews and all of the people that gave us the strength and encouragement to believe in ourselves. And I know at the end of my Day 1 when I get to have a meal before trying to sleep on a yoga mat in a tent, I will be thinking of the great Jess Douglas who will be fighting her "3am sleep monstors" as she steers her Trusty Lusty through the dark tracks of Canberra. And as I think of Jess, someone out there will be thinking of me knowing that if they too believe in themselves, they one day could do what I do.
This is one of the things I love most with what I do. Knowing that no matter what line we toe and wait for a starters gun, the sisterhood I share with the teams around me will never paralyse me into inaction.
So thanks to all the teams who have been there for me -
Liv/giant Australia : YOU CHICKS ROCK!
Vision Crusaders : Your dedication to a cause so close to many has nothing but admiration from me. We have done it the hard way, but we have done it!
Fighting Back : I am so proud of each and everyone of you and can't wait to celebrate Melbourne with you all.
And the best team of all - TEAM FAILLA. I will never get sick of hearing "GO MUMMY GO!"
So here is to 9 days time as I leave with Maverick and a small bag of essential items!
Oh - best I start training. All the other girls are tapering :)