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Saturday, April 11, 2009

See Fox S-O-A-K-E-D!!!!

Well the rain was...interesting.  On one hand I seriously felt hard core at several points in my ride for braving the weather.  On the other hand, however, it sucked!  By mile 3 my butt and lower back were drenched from the water my back tire was flipping up.  My mile 5 the front of my legs were drenched and my capri work out pants were plastered to my shins.  Mile 7 brought a very uncomfortable dripping sensation down the arch of my foot.  My socks were getting cold at this point and the toe of my shoes were squishy.  By the time I finished I was literally soaking wet at every layer.  Yuck....because then I had to get off my bike and run for 20 minutes.  I lost the mental battle eventually and didn't quite run the whole thing.  It was something about the amount of water that was flying out of my shoes every time I would swing my leg forward...or maybe the fact that I could see water bouncing out of my shoes every time they hit the pavement.  Eventually, the part of your brain that just keeps saying "this is crazy" is shouting over the part that says "I'm a finisher!"  At the end of the day I survived and did finish AND NEVER WIPED OUT.  But I will need to focus more on running this week!

I'm glad I went today.  Aside from training in difficult weather conditions I also had an interesting and valuable experience on my bike ride.  We did about 2.5 miles from the start out to a loop.  The loop we did was around 7 miles.  I did the loop 2x.  On the first loop I was trying to focus more on my cadence and wasn't wanting to play around in higher gears.  It wasn't until one of the bike coaches rode by me and slowed down to chat that we started talking about my gearing. 

I explained that I was horrified that I was going to fall on such steep and WET hills...there was soooo much water...and as a result wasn't wanting to mess with gears as much...and because of the hills I didn't want to switch into the much higher gears since I always seem to drop my chain when I do that.  (Additionally, one of my team captains had told me to stay in the lower gears on one of our previous I listened.)  We rode together for the next 5 miles or so and talked all about gearing.  She was explaining the mechanics of the bike in a whole new way to me.  It was sooooo enlightening!  Ultimately once we really started cranking she pointed out that we were riding about 10 miles per hour faster than when she first joined me.  And because we cranked into a better gear I was actually exerting LESS energy!  It was a great lesson to learn!  Now I just need to bike on flatter courses so I don't get too used to coasting downhill...or in the event of heavy rain....breaking downhill!

After our workout we had a picnic/grill out.  Because we were in a National Park we had the benefit of bathrooms and covered picnic tables.  Lunch (at 10:00 am) was yummy and I had a great time chatting and catching up with everyone.  I could probably go on with other stories for hours...but I think I need to rest!

off to nap!
send love, support, pennies, powersongs, and anything else you think could help!
much love,

PS...this video shows a brief glance at the conditions I was practicing in...only it was really raining!

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