It is always uncertain how the body reacts to excessive and new ways of training. I have had my share of problems in the past, mainly my knees being the weak spot. During the last weeks I have felt a little discomfort in my left knee, mainly when standing up pedalling, and during my long ride last weekend I felt no doubt that I needed to rest for a week or so. A few weeks ago I did some single leg squats for the first time, and I think they might have caused the injury. But in the same period I had long hours at my desk working with no breaks. Maybe that is the reason. Or maybe running stairs is the problem. I don't know, and that is probably the most frustrating feeling; not to know what caused the injury. That week is almost gone, my knee feels a lot better already, and I feel confident that I can continue my training.
Today I had a short 40 km testride with only a few out of the saddle intervals, and it seems that my knee has recovered. And the five days with no riding just reminds me of how much I like riding my bike. Even the headwind sections today was a pure joy. Unfortunately I have no patience when it comes to recovery from an injury. During the last days with no training, whenever a couple of hours passed with no discomfort in my knee I thought to myself "maybe I should go for a ride today", and had to remind myself that I had promised myself not to ride.
Anyway, this leads me to one of my concerns regarding the AZT race; how will my body handle the long hours in the saddle and on foot pushing the bike and hiking through Grand Canyon with the bike on my back? What new weaknesses will pop up? Two years ago I had a herniated disk in my neck after a crash on my bike. I do 30-60 minuts exercises for my shoulders, arms and core every day to prevent pain and to maintain a kind of status quo. I have had no problems on my long training sessions so far, but I can't ignore the nagging concern that it might get worse again. All I can do right now is to continue my training and cross my fingers, hoping for the best, getting my body used to the extra stress.