Sunday, October 12, 2008

...a hard, hard ride.

Today I am recovering from yesterday's ride. It was the Oktoberfest ride, our last big one of the season. Last year it was my first ever big ride over 35 miles. I was so proud of myself for finishing the metric century--about 60 miles. So this year, after all the riding I've been doing, I was sure I was ready for the 100 miler. But...I didn't factor in the wind. And I should have given myself permission to wimp out and do the metric century again. The wind was from the north yesterday, and it was bitterly cold. I thought I was strong enough to hang on to the fast group. And I was so disappointed to be dropped at the first big hill. And embarrassed that two of the fast guys hung back so I wouldn't be all alone. And relieved when another rider, closer to my level caught up to the group. (The fast guys were relieved too!) So the two of us slogged it out, mile by mile, wondering why in the heck we were even doing what we were doing. Who in their right mind would be out on a bike in the cold, cold wind?? But, around the 50 mile mark the wind was sometimes at our backs and the sun was shining. For about 15 miles we had fun rollers to zoom down and could actually use momentum to help us climb back up. Then we turned west again, and the wind shifted. Back to pedaling through molasses. The last rest stop was at 80 miles--they offered snacks and more water, but for some reason didn't have a porta potty! Yikes. After that I let my riding partner know that I could care less about getting a full 100 miles in and that I was going to take the most direct route back to town. He agreed. It had to have been the most grueling 94 miles I have ever ridden. But even though I can't honestly say, "It was fun!" there were good things about the day:

1) I ride with a good group of people. The fast guys would not have abandoned me out in the boonies even if it meant a slower ride for them.

2) I met new people. Cindy, from Vancouver BC, drove down here specifically for this ride. We visited before the ride, and I invited her to come shower at my place before we went back to eat. We exchanged email addresses, and she is planning on coming back next year. Charlie and Larry, from Yakima, were part of our group and fun to visit with at dinner.

3) I got a free T-shirt and beer out of the deal.

So today I am taking it easy, washing my biking clothes, making cinnamon buns (cheating by using the bread machine to make the dough), reading and watching movies. Oh, and it's a beautiful day out--NO wind, clear and cool. A perfect day for a bike ride. There's always next year.

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