At the end of April, I was finally seeing months of hard work on power and even harder work on dieting finally come together to produce some results. However, with just under two laps to go, my brake hood caught was caught by an untied barrier balloon, and I was thrown to the ground at 27mph. The weeks following the crash have been long and slow to rebuild. Almost seven weeks later, I am still in pain every morning until I take some Advil. I cracked ribs, and they seemed to heal in four weeks, but whatever collateral damage occurred has left me sore everyday since. At this point, I don’t think I’m going to ride pain free for months, so it is time to start racing again. My power is off around 5% from the peak at this point, but that is better than the initial 10 – 15%. With very little post-crash training, my weight went up about 9 lbs, but I am now only 6lbs over and plan to get within a couple lbs from peak low by July. With some good fortune, I can hopefully achieve near peak condition again by cyclocross season in October. Either way, it is time to toe the start line again, so I’m planning to start my first race back this weekend in Covington, GA. I’m not looking for any results, and I’m going to be happy with finishing. Out of the saddle sprints and hard surges still hurt since they pull on the rib area, so I’ll likely be the guy hanging next to the motorcycle marshal all day. Hopefully, it will be an uneventful return this weekend.