Not doing a half marathon this spring has turned out to be the best decision! Yah, I missed Athens. And I'm sure Earth Day would have been a great race. But, it just wasn't meant to be this season. Since I'm not running, son1 and I have been able to focus on my first love--bicycling!
Training this spring has sucked due to the weather. It's been stupid windy. Not just your breezy 10mph winds. We're talking 20+mph sustained, gusting to 40mph. Even heading out early hasn't helped. Where we should have been getting 50+mile rides, we were reduced to 30-40's. NOT a good start to the season! We were hoping that "time in the saddle" would count for more than actual miles.
Two weeks ago, son1 and I rode up to Grandma's. We opted to do Fri-Sat so we'd be back for Easter. Friday dawned with... rain. At least it was 45* and winds weren't too bad, and even a slight tailwind! The day was just flying by. At m50 we came to a T-intersection where we had to stop. I went to clip out and discovered I was stuck! If you've never ridden with cleats, imagine that sinking feeling you get when you are walking and have stepped on your shoelace. Yah, that sinking feeling knowing you are going down. I was able to make a right turn and keep going and eventually did get my foot out--only because the cleat came apart! Once coming to a graceful stop, we discovered there are four screws holding the cleat in and I was missing three. Uh oh... I still had all four in the other shoe so we took one from there to I'd have two screws. I called the Bike Shop from the side of the road--only to learn they were closed for Good Friday. But, there was someone doing repairs and he'd probably still be there when we got in. Two hours later when we got into town, that was our first stop. Luckily, he was able to find an eclectic collection of screws (Phillips, slot, flat head and rounded) that would be good enough to get us back home. We had a very nice visit with Grandma. She always enjoys it when we ride up to visit because she's the one who got me riding when I was 16yo. Saturday dawned about 20* warmer, but much windier. And it was headwinds. Again. Physically I never felt well all day. To top things off, at m60 I got stung by a bee! We stopped shortly after that. Even that break didn't help. At m70 son1 suggested I do a Gu. That did the trick--most likely the caffeine-- and the last miles just flew by. 85miles both days.
The rest of the week we spent basically recovering. Bit of swimming, bit of running. Nothing serious because we had our first race of the season! Son1 found a 12hr challenge. Well, okay, that'd be good TOSRV training. He could do the challenge, I'd do the tour and then do hand-ups for him. Then I looked at previous year's results. That's it! I'M RACING!
Neither of us had ever done a 12hr challenge so didn't have any idea what to expect. Although we thought we had plenty of time, we arrived only 30mins before the start. Registration line. POJ line. We had just enough time to drop our cooler at the S/F and get our bikes before it was time to line up. I knew it was going to be a long day, so I focused on holding back. At about m10 I was finally settling in and thought it would be a good time to start munching on a bagel. Uh oh... In the rush I had forgotten to pick up any food out of the cooler. At least I had some cookies in my bento box. The first 50mi loop flew by and I did a quick stop at the S/F. POJ, swap bottles, pick up food and GO! The second lap was tougher as the wind was picking up. Finishing this lap, I knew I couldn't do another. It was only 2:30. The 7mi loop didn't open until 3:30. Oh well, no way could I head out on another 50. Another girl was lamenting the same thing. Hey! Ya wanna ride it together? Sure! Let's go! The third lap was probably the easiest, even though the wind was brutal. We then were able to do two short loops. 165 total. Lovin' it!
Son1 also had a good day. With the wind, I wasn't sure what kind of day he'd have. When I stopped after my second lap, I asked the RD if he'd seen son1. No, but they looked him up and told me he had finished his second lap in under 6hrs. Great! That meant he'd probably hit his goal of 200. Turns out he had gotten in with a great group with some previous RAAM riders. He finished the day with 204miles. Best part of the day? Matching hardware!
This coming weekend is TOSRV--Columbus to Portsmouth and back for 210miles in 2 days. On our drive home, I was suggesting to son1 that we make it non-stop. Heck, we have the miles to do it! Nah, mom, it's a tour. Let's just go and have fun. Okay, we'll see what happens when we get out there. I bet he wants to race it after all.
So, yah, I'm enjoying the heck out of just having some fun. Triathlon season starts in a month, so I'll have to start getting serious eventually. But I was ready for fun.
Congratulations! Sounds like you had a great weekend. Good luck and have fun this weekend!