25 May, 2008

I am getting stronger

I have a long way to go to be satisfied (that may never happen). But after riding yesterday and today, I feel like I can do so much more given time and focus. I worried being off the bike so long. My legs, quads and hip flexors mostly, want to slow down, but I ask more of them and they come through.

Stayed with the front group until Baxter and Lexington area, missed a light and fell behind. Cathy caught up on Lexington. Told me how strong I am getting and she was having a hard time staying with me. Temps were around 80 and humidity at least 45%, clear blue skies and the sun made the pavement radiate heat. Cathy and I pushed all the way through downtown and out River Road. Got stopped by a train at the tracks where 4 lanes change to 2. Waist wasn't too long. Sure would've been nice if it had been in the shade though. We did fairly well as far as staying closer to the front until Glenview. I said I was stopping for a sec and she said, Thank you! Took my helmet off and poured water on my head. About 12 cyclists passed us during that 3 minutes, bummer! I felt stronger on Glenview today, though still not easy or fast. Finished the 23 miles in an hour and 20 minutes, not bad considering.

I'm amazed that I haven't had a Benedryl all Spring. My lungs are so clear. I still deal with some early morning crud that I assume is some asthma and some pet dander. But I am breathing so well!

Still not sure what I'll do tomorrow as far as the bike goes. But I will ride somehow. Louisville's Mayor has a hike/bike event Monday morning that would be fun, slow and easy.

There's a 5K in July I've asked my BFF about running. I haven't run for ever and a day. Should get up and do that in the morning. Depends on how late we party tonight. :-)

Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend. Mother Nature has been very kind to us with the fantastic weather.

24 May, 2008

Good to be back home

All in all it was a good week. Monday saw a decent work day - though I still never seem to get anything marked off the list and it stay off. Went to bike handling class, it was gray and drizzling. We had class but no ride, bummer.

Tuesday was full. Worked from home for a couple of hours. Then took my bike to the LBS for a tune-up before heading to the airport. It was overcast, but the rain had moved east. This caused a nice 1.5 delay for take-off. I was so glad it was a direct flight. No plane changes to miss connections. Approach to Philly saw a 30 holding pattern before landing. Met my boss at the conference. Chatted with several colleagues and a few former colleagues in the exhibit hall. Walked a few blocks and had a nice seafood dinner, complete with oysters on the half shell for appetizers. I worried, for a couple of minutes, that this is a month with no R. Got back to the room about 9, checked email and turned in around 11.

Wednesday was a full day of workshops. Most were very good. One could've been better, but slow presenters and end of day made for a long 1:15. Met one VP with a Fortune 500 company during lunch. He made a couple of suggestions which we've already instituted. Said we should advertise it, I thought we had! My company held an employee reception and I met numerous co-workers from around the country. A colleague from Europe that I've worked with for several years was there. He and I had tickets to another event at Constitution Hall and took one of the buses over. Somehow we lost track of each other, but no harm no foul. Very good day, but another that saw 9 getting to the room.

Thursday started slowly. Had a restless night. My boss took me to lunch at this market place, very cool, very busy! Had a great sandwich of sliced roast pork and provolone on a hoagie. yum! I got to my room at the end of the day around 5-ish. Didn't have plans and needed to get some work done. My legs were screaming at me - hadn't been on the bike since Sunday! Went to the gym at the hotel and rode 55 minutes for 15 miles. Had my HR at 136 for about 15 minutes. All was right with the world.

Friday, had a workshop til 10. Then home. I really wanted to do the weekend tune-up after picking up my bike. But needed to get home to hubby. Went on 35 miler this morning. Stayed in front on the way out and felt great. Another woman cyclist wasn't doing Iroquois hill. After missing so many days, I decided to opt out too, afraid I'd burn up on the way back. I should've done it. It's a fantastic day of sunshine. Great temps. Perfect. Now to mow so I can do the Heine Bros tomorrow.

So good to be home and on my bike. I missed her!

18 May, 2008

Another week full of living

My youngest had her 23rd birthday on Tuesday. It's the first birthday that I've not physically been with her. She has been a smoker for quite a while now. She decided on Sunday to start on the nicotine patch and made it from Monday thru Friday evening tobacco free. Then she fell off the wagon. It is so very hard to quit. I know she'll try again. Hope it doesn't take her as long as it took me to decide.

I rode all weekend, so nice after all the rain to have such sunny days with perfect temps. Friday saw the weekend tune-up, about 12 miles. A.B. did a 50 miler from EP Tom Sawyer to Simpsonville and back. I slept on it and showed for the ride Sat morning. What a blast! It was great fun, beautiful countryside, and the last 10 miles were HARD! There are a couple of tough hills (bumps in the road for some seasoned cyclists) and a head wind most of the ride. When we didn't have a head wind, we had a cross wind. Nothing to the back! On the first half of the ride, we rode down a country lane, paved but only wide enough for one car and passed a shallow cow pond where 2 cranes were standing. Fantastic! All kinds of spring wild flowers. I started to bring my camera, but I was too busy riding to think about clicking off pics. We barely saw any road kill, no traffic! A.B. told me, but I had to experience it. One the first half there are plenty of hills that you fly down and coast up the next one. Now, that is one sweet experience! On the way back one of the guys cruised past Donna, Stewart and I. We were moving uphill at a good clip and outta the right side of the road a squirrel runs in front of the fast dude. Makes him swerve, but he recovers nicely. I just kept thinking I never want that to happen to me while I'm flying downhill in my drops.

Went this afternoon to the Ice Cream ride at Widow's Walk in Jeff. Head wind or cross wind both ways, but not nearly as tough as yesterday. Great way to keep the legs limber, still a workout. Tomorrow is handling class. Then I have to go 4 days off the bike. I'm not thrilled and hope the hotel has something I can spin on. I logged over 100 miles this week! woo hoo.

Here's to everyone having a fantastic week full of happiness and sunshine. :-)

15 May, 2008

It is Spring so Mother Nature has ordered rain

We've been blessed with many, many sunny warm days since mid March. I've been able to ride my bike outside quite a lot. I know we need rain. We are getting it most weekends. It's rained for 2 days and everything is dreary and soggy. I'm hoping it dries out so I can ride all weekend.

Hubby got his cast off on Tuesday. He now has a removeable splint to keep his finger protected. Much easier on his shoulder and elbow. He was so happy, he dropped me off at my club ride. Thrilled he can drive and not be a prisoner in his own home any longer. Not still out of the woods and needs to stay away from caffeine and nicotine for a couple of months.

Hope I can have something of more interest to post soon. But nothing like a severed finger I hope!

Here's to sunshine where ever you are.

11 May, 2008

Odd set of days

Funny how life works. Did the first of bike handling classes on Monday. The Skirts started their version of Tuesday Night Worlds the same night. A friend said that would probably be more fun, but I've decided I need to learn what I can and be a safe and courteous cyclist. Then, I can see if I can pedal with those ladies.

Tuesday was a great ride and I chased some faster people than what I've been used to riding with. I was having a total blast, redlight to redlight downtown. Got to River Rd and sometime before Zorn, got a nice cramp in my left calf. I told people to move on. Then as I slowed I tried a few things. Pedalled with my right foot while stretching my left leg. Nope that didn't help. I decided to drink and just keep pedalling. Started to get a little worried. I wanted it gone before we hit Glenview Hill. It subsided and I was able to enjoy the rest of the ride. I didn't lose too much ground from everyone. Well I caught up with about 4 of them. Those guys on fixies still amaze me.

Didn't ride Wed - Fri. Lack of sleep on Wed and Thurs didn't help. Saturday was beautiful and with hubbies hand still in a cast I did the domestics. Learned to drive the new mower (doesn't have a steering wheel, 2 arms) a zero degree something or other. (that's probably wrong, too). Big learning curve. Ran into a tree at one point. But at least the yard is presentable for a few more days. Finally, after taking Mom to buy flowers I started pacing the floor. It was about 5 and hubby said to go ride my bike. I did, for about 10 miles. Stupid Sherri had only had a bologna sandwich all day, then grabbed a banana just before taking off. It was about 73F, sunny, fantastic day to ride. Wish I'd had more fuel to do another 10.

Mother's Day has been fairly quiet. Planned on a club ride, but rain and wind prevented that. Put an hour and a half on the trainer instead. Youngest came to visit for a short while. Oldest pulled a double at Captain's Quarters restaurant on the Ohio River. Hope she made some good tips. She called and chatted between shifts.

Mother Nature is supposed to give a couple of days of sunshine now. Hubby is to get his cast off on Tuesday. We've had to cut open tshirts so he could wear something. I'm still washing his hair for him. Life will get a little easier for him come Tuesday night.

Hope everyone else is doing well out there. Enjoy the sun when you can!

04 May, 2008

What a week it's been!

Took Wednesday, 30 April through Monday, 5 May off for holiday. It's Derby week and I've never taken more than Friday off in the past. Wednesday I slept in, vegged and surfed a while. Started getting my route together for my ride and gathered my gear, aired my tires, etc. About 12:45 the phone rings and it's hubby. He'd cut his finger badly on a circular saw. Asked me to pick him up and take him to the hospital. The adrenaline starts and I "change hats". We go to Jewish. They have the best Hand Care Center anywhere.

He gets to surgery around 7 in recovery about 9:30. He severed a tendon, nerve and main artery between the last two knuckles on his left hand middle finger. They said to expect to spend at least 3 days in the hospital. Seems an artery repair is touch and go situation. Room was kept at 75F, no nicotine, no caffeine, no chocolate OR risk losing the finger. He accepts the terms and goes cold turkey with all of the above. Tells me not to stay at hospital the whole time because he would be sleeping most of the time. I road a club ride Thursday evening. They let him come home Friday night.

Saturday, one set of quests didn't get contacted that we cancelled the party for Derby. They stayed about 4 hours. They were a good distraction for Terry. He has a huge cast. I get to call Monday for a follow up appt with the surgeon, they said 2 weeks. 3 months before the tendon is rehabilitated.

You never know what life is going to hand you on any given day. So, live it like it could be the last one. Or one of the last ones.

03 May, 2008

Wheeling into the night - Thursday night

Club ride from Hogan's fountain - 7:00 pm start - must have lights for the return. This ride normally goes Broadway, but Thursday was the Pegasus Parade and many road closures. Took Breckinridge to Third Street and out to Iroquois, came back to Broadway which was still closed to traffic, but they let us in.

First time I was the only female on the ride. Kept hearing that they go slow and won't drop anyone, typically 12 - 15 mph. Yeah, uh huh. Course I wanted to pull my weight and so worked to stay with front group. I was doing okay until 3 traffic signals from the park. They were staying between 18 and 20 at least all the way to the park and then back.

I think I burned too much trying to keep up. The hill at Iroquois was tough. I made it, though was huffing and puffing the whole way. Never did drop to my granny gear though. The way back down was so cool and breezy. We came out of the park and I was in front, booking. Damn computer stopped working so I couldn't keep up with mph, total mileage, nothing. Stayed up front until 3rd and Eastern Pkwy. They dropped me at the light. Tommy and I rode back together. Ran into the front group at Barret and stayed together until Shells where I had cold beer waiting. 25 miles on a warm, humid evening with the guys. It was a fun time. I was tuckered out. I slept so soundly, the cats didn't even wake me.

I have a long way to go, but felt good about my progress to date. Just want to get stronger and faster. I'd really like to fly down those roads and streets. A girl can dream :-)