Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Of road bikes and broken computers…..

Well, last night it started. I took the geared road bike down off the hook in the garage, lubed the chain, put air in the tires and planned my first ever “training ride” for 2009.

My first thought, as I pulled it off the hook in the garage was, “dang, this thing is pretty light”. I think my road bike weighs in just under 20lbs. which when compared to my full suspension bike at 30 and my SS mt bike at 24lbs seems pretty darn light.

Well, I loaded everything up in the truck and headed out to meet Trace and Greg for a ride up and over Redwood Rd to the bottom of Pinehurst and back. I would like to have done the entire zoo loop, but with it still getting dark by 5:30 there just wasn’t time.

We started out up Redwood Rd and the first hill we come to before we even get into the canyon kills me. Every time! I think it’s something like 300 ft but it comes pretty much right outta the box and I’m always huffing like a herd of buffalo by the time I get to the top.
Luckily this hill is followed by a nice downhill then a stretch of flat that lets the legs loosen up. After that though, it’s about a 5 mile climb to the top.

It’s funny, I don’t think of myself as a fat old Buick hauling a trailer up a hill, but that’s how I felt last night. By the time we got to the top of that climb, I was wheezing and puffing, my heart rate was up there around 700 beats a minute and I was sweating like a fat guy in a tuxedo at a yoga parlor (how’s that for a visual?)

Well, once we started down the backside of the hill my mass and fearless descending skills (also known as a lack of brains) took over and we screamed down the back to Pinehurst where we immediately turned around and headed back up the hill.

The majority of the climb back up isn’t too bad, there’s just the last section past the entrance to Bort Meadows where it steepens up and gets kinda serious. I guess Trace decided at that point that he was sick of my whining and picked up the pace to get away from me. My first thought was “there’s no way that’s gonna happen” My second thought was “ow my legs hurt, go ahead, I’ll catch up later

Well, we finally made it to the top and once again, my mad skillz came into play. The only reason I’m willing to suffer the climbs is so I can enjoy the downhill and Redwood Rd is one of my favorites. It’s fairly smooth, not ridiculously steep and there is very little traffic….which of course means you just put it in the big ring and let ‘er rip….

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end and we soon ran out of hill and were back on the flat which leads to the last hill of the ride. Several of my friends refer to this hill at Li’l Evil since it’s short but steep and comes when you’re already pretty much out of gas.

So, we finally make it back to the trucks and I’m feeling pretty good about the ride. Sure I was dying but not too bad and it was a good training ride. That’s when Trace mentions we had only done 10 miles…..huh? Ok, if this is how I feel after 10 miles, how can I possibly do 100 by March? I know I’m not in prime shape, but it is winter and I shouldn’t feel this beat up after doing 10 miles in an hour and 15 minutes.
To be honest, I went home kinda bummed…..

Well, the story actually has a much better ending. This morning I was adding the ride to my training log on and when I plugged it in, I found out that we didn’t do 10 miles, we actually did about 20 and that we had done about 1500 ft of climbing.
So, I am still out of shape, but not AS out of shape as I originally thought I was.
Evidently Trace’s computer is broken….

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