This past week was good. The weather wasn’t great the whole week but it was good. I had a free trainer session at the gym on Thursday. I have to speak with them about getting another one because my trainer was late training someone else and I was pressed for time. I only took the session because I wanted to learn to do proper squats. I was holding dumbbells prior to that. I wanted to use the barbell but I didn’t want to hurt myself. He did show me how and I did them on Friday during my normal Friday morning workout. My workout on Friday was a blast. I had a great time doing different strength exercises that I don’t normally do. I see and feel the changes in my body.
On Saturday morning I woke up super early for the time trial in NJ. I met a friend so we could drive up together. As always I asked if food was permitted in his car. I’m glad I asked because he doesn’t eat in his car. He said it was ok to have a banana so certain foods were permitted. I, of course, offered to bring him a banana and he accepted. While shopping at Whole Foods the day before I picked up oatmeal in spill proof pouches. I picked up enough for the two of us. Please be responsible when accepting a ride from a friend and ask them before you eat in their car. It’s always proper to offer them food too. They’re doing you a favor and, out of respect for that favor, please respect their preferences.
There were five of us that went to the time trial and we all arrived at the same time. We gave ourselves more than enough time to get ready and warm up before our scheduled start times. It was a foggy morning so I was happy that I had bought a pair of fog resistant cycling sunglasses when I stopped at the shop to buy gels specifically for the race. My girl briefed me on the course as we warmed up. She’s always so thorough and I’m learning so much from her. I love the way she sweetly tells me what I need to know. I’m really not sure she knows what a soothing effect she has on people when they’re nervous. She got me pretty calm. I always want to vomit before racing but this time was different.
We got to the starting line. One by one, every thirty seconds, a lady was dispatched. When it was my turn I went to the start line. The guy held me up and did a good job of it too. I started my Wahoo. They counted down and told me to go while giving me a light push. Off I went! My friend cheered me on as I pulled away. I remembered to be in a lighter gear. I pedaled with ease and geared up appropriately. My cadence and power were spot on but I felt like I was barely moving. My speed was lower than last time. I didn’t let that bother me. I just kept on rolling. After about a mile, I was passed. A bit further up the road I passed someone. She was on an entry level bike wearing loose clothing and moving slowly. I started to relax knowing that, whatever happened up the road, I wouldn’t be last. A few miles went by before I was passed again. About a mile after that there was a man signaling the first turn to us. I got out of my drops and onto my hoods because there was a hill at the first turn. I went up that hill as hard as I could. There was a cluster of women up the hill. I was passed again. I started getting closer and closer to one of the ladies. As I got closer I saw that she was a number ahead of me. She wasn’t doing well at all and was losing it. I kept my distance as I was passing her. As I passed I told her not to give up and to dig in. She let me know that there was a car back so I pulled in front of her. As soon as the car passed I pulled aside again to give her room to climb. I told her to keep digging. We made our way up that hill to the end of the road. Another man was there to signal the next turn. I gave her the right of way. She was up the flat road and was doing well but started to slow down. I passed her and kept moving. A bit further up the road another man signaled the final turn. I was in my drops and the man moved back knowing I would turn wide. I was about 2 miles away from the finish line and I felt as if my tire was flat but I kept going. If I got a flat at that point I could just tough through it but it wasn’t a flat, just a turbulent road. I passed a man on a bike on the side of the road cheering me on that there was a half mile to go. That made me so happy and I thanked him when I saw him after the race. I made it to the finish and found my girl. We cheered as the rest of our crew came in while mingling with other finishers.
When all of us were finished we talked a bit and rode back to the registration table to await our results. My girl came in 1st and I came in 5th out of 9 women. I was exactly mid range. I was happy with that. I completed that 14.3 mile course with 725 ft of elev in 49:09 minutes. My girl received beer as her prize. She competed using her brand new bike and it made such a difference. She has more gears, a lot more features, and the bike is much lighter. The 2nd place finisher was over a minute behind her. It’s safe to say that she’s in love with her new bike.
On Sunday I went on the A/BB combined ride. It was great. I forgot to put the saddle bag back on my bike and I felt a huge difference. I’ll never use a saddle bag again! I plan to load my pockets up instead. I set a couple of PRs as well. I got a flat and was at the mercy of my group to lend me a tube. The guy with the awesome pump with a gauge on it inflated my tire to the correct pressure. As long as he’s on the ride I’ll never use my own pump. After the ride there was pizza and beer waiting for us! That made this weekend all that much more special. I belong to a bike club that takes excellent care of us. I rode with a great group. I’m so happy to ride with such amazing and supportive people who are always there for me and encourage me. A special thanks to my friend who always paces me back when I fall behind and suffers up climbs painfully slow with me.
I learned so much this past week and weekend. I’m so happy things went the way they did so I could learn and experience all that I have. Thanks to all my friends who support and encourage me. Thank you all for reading and continuing to show your support. I’m truly lucky that there are so many people in my life that I learn from and grow with.