I am absolutely certain life's trials attributed to my success this year at Nationals. Being able to make the most of your time on this planet - especially when focused on an athletic endeavor makes the time pass quickly and easily. Now that I've had some time to reflect at home, this past year was one of the best performances I've ever had and fuels my fire for the years to come.
Having something to focus on while experiencing a year of firsts since Ryan's death was a God send. It would have been far to easy to slip into grieving unconsciousness, letting the blues consume me. Instead I found the right mental and physical support group that pushed me to new levels and helped me realize that I can do this.
I'd like to personally thank Jennie Reed for being a world class coach, mentor and friend. Her commitment to coaching me was beyond the call of duty and I feel so very blessed to have been coached by her. Not only did she provide kick ass workouts, but she also spent nearly as much time at the track as I did - providing lap times, effort explanations, encouragement and laughter. I learned how to give each effort 100% and go beyond what I thought was possible.
I'd also like to thank my mom- who was flexible with work, life and time throughout my demanding workouts and quick dashes to the track when the weather was dictating what could be done.
And of course all of my friends and family who provided tons of encouragement and cheering while I pedaled several hundred miles in circles.