Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Humbling Ride Today

I had a good ride today, actually it was a great ride today.  50 degrees in late December is a bonus day to be outside.  I rode with Don and a friend and fellow Ironman that I haven't seen for a long time Rick.  Don (as I have written) is GONZO into his Leadville 100 training and Rick is training for Ironman St. George which is the hilliest Ironman of all and the earliest US IM in May.  I am not even close to being in race shape so I knew my day was going to be a challenge.  Couple that with riding on Mountain Bike vs. road bike and crashing into the curb and going down in the first 5 minutes, I knew today was going to be rough.(I think that covers all of my excuses for sucking).

So we left out from Bethalto and Rick left both Don and I on several occasions.  We couldn't stay on his back wheel.  He is in good - scratch that... great shape.  We get to the trails and our first turn on to the trail was a very short but pretty steep incline.  I was in the wrong gear so as I down shift to climb the hill I feel my chain seize up.... then get REALLY Loose, then I fell over...  I busted my chain... UGH... By the time Rene could come get me, it would be 30 plus minutes so Don had the idea for he and Rick to ride to the local bike shop about 15 minutes away and pick up the tool and new link for my chain which was an awesome idea.  They still get their ride in, I still get what is left and all is right in the world...   So not only were these guys dragging my sorry butt around all day, they were also Sherpa to based camp (the bike shop) for supplies.  They were quick but standing waiting it got pretty chilly.  I was in shorts and cycling shoes so I couldn't run or do anything to stay warm so I hopped in place for a good 20 - 30 minutes until they got back.  The chain repair was literally 3 minutes and we were off.

The trail ride was good.  It was pretty wet and sloppy in parts.  Don of course spends most of his time riding the trails, Rick very little and me a few times under my belt this year.  We did that for about 30 r0 45 minutes and then hit the road back to Bethalto.  We were hitting it pretty hard.  On the way out into a head wind we averaged 14.5 MPH which is pretty fast on a mountain bike.  On the way home we averaged 15.25 MPH and I was feeling it.

I don't train with people normally, not because I don't like too but instead it is just very hard to do.  I am literally cramming my workouts in my day and many times I don't exactly know when that will be making it very difficutlt to plan around someone elses schedule as well.  However, when it does work out it is great.  It makes the time go by much quicker and when riding with stronger riders you tend to push harder than you would when you are by yourself making the workout harder and in many ways more beneficial.

Can't wait for the next one.  Now I just need to work on strength for the next 2 months before my final IM push begins so I can keep up with those guys.

All for now....


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