Trying to take advantage of warmer weather, I found a couple of guys to join me on Thursday for a road ride. I got out of work a little early trying to take as much advantage of daylight. As we were getting ready, we noticed it was a little cooler than we thought it would be. I changed my mind a couple of times on what I was going to wear and soon enough everyone was there. I was stuck with my choice of gear and off we were.
There was a good head/cross wind going. We started a little slower pace than I expected, but I was not complaining. It was hard to get a good pace line going with the direction the wind was coming and the cars that passed. There was four of us, so there were some places to hide from the wind and I tried to take full advantage of those when I could.
After a warm up, the pace was lifted some, but still not as fast as last weeks ride. I was still not complaining. My legs were hurting and feeling weak, but I was still moving good, well up to the point that the road went up hill some. There were a couple of sections to climb, but they were by far not huge hills. That is where I was not doing so well. I know I didn’t make real good choices on food that day, but I was short of breath and gasping for more way too quick. I had to slow my climbing pace down and try to just make it up the hill.
Everyone was real nice about waiting up for me, but I didn’t like it. I was feeling like crap. I felt like fat albert and could feel my stomach sticking out what I would have though looked like a basketball. Not a very pleasant feeling. I kept thinking I was going to see Ralph, but he never showed up. I did settle down some and had some better moments, but I still was not climbing very well at all. Just about when I was ready to throw in the towel and tell them to go on, some good words of encouragement kept me with the group. The pace slowed for a little bit to let me recover and suck down some mustard. I was feeling the cramping in my legs again. I have had way more trouble with that this year then I can ever remember. I am not sure what to think about that. I sure hope to get it figured out before racing season starts.
After a few minutes, the mustard did it’s trick. The wind was not in front of us anymore, but not really behind us either. The road flattened out and my legs got some needed spinning in. I was feeling better and keeping the wheel in front of me much better. The pace picked up as we went and things rolled along much better. At this point, when it was my turn to roll around at the front, I was tearing myself up trying to keep the group moving. I would fall off and try to recover before my next turn back up front. A few guys took some long turns and before I knew it, we were making the last few turns back to the car. I rolled around to the front for the last little straight and gave it a good go. The speed pushed up a lot faster than I thought I would be able to go at this point in the ride. Especially after how bad it started.
Overall I am still glad we got out. I need to figure out how to be stronger, but what I really have to do is figure out how to climb faster. I can climb a lot of stuff. Even when I am on my singlespeed, I climb well, but not fast. They say it is all power to weight ratio for climbing. I am not sure what I could do to end up with the power I need so I can push all this weight up the hill. I hope somewhere in the middle of that, I can figure out how to loose some of the extra pounds and make the journey easier. We shall see.
Thanks guys for waiting on me. I hope to keep heading out with you to keep getting faster and stronger.