Coughing, puking, that’s CX racin’.

Today I headed up to Yellowsprings Ohio (Dave Chappelle lives there!) for an OVCX race at John Bryan State Park. I was feeling better after 4 days off the bike due to a head cold and a lot of coughing. I was itching to race some CX and see what this Raleigh could do, though my gut was telling me to lay low and rest more.

That wasn’t happening.

It was cold as hell, about 37 degrees, the sun was shining and the course was slick from a few days of rain this week. I never have time to pre-ride the course. By the time I get there, a race is usually under way, and I socialize until it’s time to stage.

They did call-ups in the order you register and I reg’d at the last minute so had a back row spot. A sweet lady I know let me have her 1st row spot so we switched places and then they blew the whistle.


I was passed early on by a bunch of women, and I didn’t try to catch them. It was all I could do to keep pedaling, my legs felt like they weighed 100lbs each. My lungs were on fire, and I wasn’t breathing well. The course was grassy, with lots of twists and turns, all pretty flat, no run ups, a little bit of gravel, some barriers, a couple of logs, some singletrack and long stretches of false flats.

JB CX 2011 006

The 1st lap was long.

About 20 minutes into the race, I couldn’t catch my breath.
Then the coughing kicked in.
I coughed and gagged and spit and coughed some more.
I wanted to stop the pain and just quit. I could not fucking breathe!

Finally we finished and I went back to the car and puked.

CX cough produces puke
CX cough produces puke

I puked 4xs total and haven’t stopped coughing yet (it’s 8:30pm). I am sucking on a Symbicort inhaler now, and gulping down Robitussin. I haven’t had this “exercise induced asthma” since last November, and I honestly thought it was gone. I never had any problems this summer racing in crits w/ a HR of 185+ for 30+ minutes. I thought this shit was gone! CX is the only type of racing that brings it out.

I think maybe this might be my last season racing CX.
I don’t like feeling this sick after a 30 minute race.

It’s stupid.

I’ll leave you with a picture Dominic doing some tricks during the race.

JB CX 2011 020

P.S. The Raleigh CX bike is R-A-D. I fucking love it. Fits me like a glove, is smooth as butter, but I am just not worthy, dammit! I got 5th out of 10 in my a/g today.

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About Judi

Bicycles are my salvation. They are my way of life. If you don't like it, then you can go straight to hell. Cincinnati, Ohio, USA

31 thoughts on “Coughing, puking, that’s CX racin’.

  1. ehh, I’ve never raced bikes before but I’ve run around a lot in the cold and put my body, lungs specifically, through some cold weather damage. Other than giving myself plenty of time to adjust to breathing cold air before doing something strenuous, wearing a face cover is the only thing that helped me. It’s irritating because it only feels good for a few minutes before I feel smothered and have to pull it off. Then it’s a back and forth for the duration of whatever I’m doing. Mask on-hot, can’t breath, mask off-throat is hurting, mask on-etc, etc.

    copy and paste this, I read it last year to prepare for my first Flagstaff winter:

  2. That a true bummer that you felt that awful. Perhaps if you rest more, the next race will not be too bad. Perhaps you have an allergy that comes on only in early fall. 5th isn’t too bad, if you’re sick as a dog. Keep at it, and don’t let your finish, finish you.

  3. Cross cough…if you have had it you understand…how much it sucks. Sometimes takes me a couple days to get that outta my system. So fun.
    Nice puke shot!

  4. Judi, how much of a warm up are you getting? It doesn’t sound like much. You should warm up for 30-45 min; basically until you have to stage. Make sure you get some hard efforts in. If you have a trainer or rollers, they make warming up near the staging area easier. 37°F doesn’t sound cold enough to cause that many problems

  5. I agree with el jefe, you need to spend some dedicated time devoted to warming up. That should help you with the exercise induced asthma. It might not prevent it from happening, but it will go a long way to helping prepare your system for max exertion. Good luck at the next race.

  6. If you’re sick, don’t race. And, el jefe has a good point – a good warm up is necessary. But, I will say, I have found 37 is cold enough for bronchial spasms. Not much fun, those. Not much fun at all.

  7. i’ve been up all fucking night, coughing fits about every 10 minutes, puking up all that was in my stomach. this is some scary shit for real. i agree about the warm up and cool down and i am also going to wear a mask to cover my mouth next weekend – if i find the balls to race again.

  8. I concur with El Jefe, warm up momma. You gotta stationary trainer? And like the rest of these cats, I agree, that’s just too damn cold for anyone’s lungs, that and the fact that you werent feeling well prior. Way to represent Judi, good work.

  9. Congrats on the good showing despite the cough.

    “if i find the balls to race again.”

    If you don’t we will all have to travel to Cincinnati and kick your ass.

    And you know how much we hate going there. Cincinnati sucks.

  10. Preparation begins with the letter H, ma’am.

    At TBC millions of years ago, the prolog was a 15 minute version of a cross-race effort which is to say balls-out. I have no problems whatsoever with breathing or anything, and for the rest of the day after that 15 minute effort, I was in a state of metabolic shock, overloaded with lactic acid, coughing and feeling like I was going to pass out. Even the day after I still was not quite right. That shit occured over 15 years ago, and I still remember the experience as a “bad one” because I did not prepare for it.

    The kind of immediate effort of cross racing is the same thing and there is no excuse. That shit needs to be prepared for. So quit fucking around in the slacker excuse sandbox. Bring your roller rollers becausethe consensus here is correctomundo. You MUST get the warmup in, as well as the cool-down.

    OTC (Out The Car) cross racing will kill you.

  11. @gnome, i always appreciate your words of wisdom and i bow down to your efforts in the racing world. thanks so much for your advice, i am hearing you LOUD and CLEAR. my trainer will be in the car next weekend and dominic can entertain me on his flat bike while i do my warm up…

    i just sat in the steam room at the y for a half hour. the coughing fits have subsided to about once an hour. :)

  12. J – You got some serious respiratory shit shakin. There are shitloads of ways to spend a wkend on your bike and have a ball. We all know you’re one tough mutha. You have nothing to prove; fuck cx racing if it messes with you this much. Think of your long term health and vitality, preserve that shit!

  13. This sponsorship is really working out for us! A last place rider result and bike photo with puke! Wow, way to go!

  14. Actually, Peter H (who is NOT associated with Raleigh)… we (the real Raleigh clowns) are quite pleased with the sponsorship. In fact, our marketing guy had this to say about the puke photo:
    “You’re supposed to do that during the race. Not only does it get rid of some weight…it also ads a layer of moisture in your mouth when no one is offering handups!”
    Judi is riding bikes – that’s all we care about. That she’s riding a Raleigh is just icing on the cake. That she’s racing… well that’s just gravy on top of the icing on the cake. Which could bring us back around to puking. Circle of life, pal. Oh, and don’t be such a dick.

  15. @Peter H, Raleigh

    You’re right, Dude! She obviously does not appreciate this Awesome Gift. How dare she ride so hard that she pukes and then TAKES A PICTURE of her puke next to your munificence?! You Guys should sponsor ME, the Trailer Park Cyclist! Here’s the review I would Write:

    Pawn Shop Dave: What the Fuck, Tim Joe, I told you not to come in here anymore.

    TPC: No, it’s OK, Dude. You’re just still pissed about me puking on your shoes at the cookout.

    Pawn Shop Dave: It wasn’t a cookout it was my son’s bar mitzvah and you weren’t even invited. And why the fuck did you take a picture of the puke on my shoes?

    TJC: Because Gayest Guy In the World Magazine was having a Gayest Vans photo contest and I needed the Beer Money.

    PSD: OK. Just tell me what’s in the box and then get out.

    TPC: What do you mean, what’s in the Box? Even a Gay Motherfucker like you can see that it spells out R-A-L- whatever…

    PSD: It spells out RALEIGH but even a Fucktard like you should know they don’t even make those anymore…

    Anyway, it would go on like this until the cops get there but in the meantime:

    Wouldn’t you say I am an awesome candidate for sponsorship? Honest to God, I will save the Pawn Ticket right up till the due date.

  16. Judy-First race of this past xc season with May 1st temp of 32 kicked in my asthma too with nasty coughing jags. It put me permanently on Singulair and an inhaler. Doc said it has to do with my aging. I have found that doing tabata workouts helps me with some of the exercise induced elements (you’ll have to look those up.) Plus, the first cold weather of the year usually does me in for a day. Then the cross country ski season comes along and then my first ski will kick my ass when I suck in the brisk 10 degree Wisconsin air. Hoping you feel better. Wouldn’t hurt to see the doc on this one.

  17. Miss Bicyclist Person,

    I don’t know who you are but I would like to say that we here at DC (Dave Chappelle) support you in your efforts to better yourself and that hippie guy on the red stingray. However, it is important to remind you that I/We am Pretty Important in the Industry (Show Business, nobody cares about bicycles) and please don’t throw up in my driveway anymore. Also, that guy won’t stop flipping around on his Stingray bicycle in my yard and please come get him and next time you are in Yellowsprings why not have your people call my people so I can plan to be Out of Town.

    Your Friend, Dave Chappelle

  18. Judi,

    Good on ya, lady! THAT is how you race cross. I have no doubt that the REAL Raleigh guys support you one HUNDRED percent KT and Sally are good people who appreciate folks who push the limit (but don’t take themselves TOO seriously). Take care of that lung butter and kick some more ass ASAP!
    Peter H? Just sad…

  19. Judi,
    it may have been the jelly beans? Congrats, you’re in the club. There is another Dominic out there that would be proud. You already had your hair tied back so you could have a hands free puke sesh. I would offer a suggestion, but i know you’re off that shit so I won’t waste your time. Sometimes a good ole safety coating helps in cold weather. thats so cool that Dave Chapelle gave a holla. You guys must be prince out there. good luck you’ll conquer. One can’t go any harder than “blaaaaaugh”. thats the top.

  20. You must have been riding hard to puke, because the course was so fucking easy I rode it with one hand!

  21. Hi J,
    It was very nice to read Raleigh flowed gifts for your local grass-roots event for kids and tossed in a CX bike for you that seems to match your skill level(ha-ha)but remember and i am sure Mr. D will remind you: Any one can suck on any given day…but it is those that swallow that define champion!