So maybe it's not really off-season. Base period is more like it. Riding the trainer as much as I can, even if it's a short session. Tuesdays and Thursdays are great because the club puts on the Trainer Tours, so at least you can sweat along with 40 or so friends.
I don't want to complain about the weather. It's winter and is supposed to be cold and snowy and stuff. Makes us appreciate those 100F days. Seems not only do I have issues with staying upright on a bicycle, I also have trouble with the whole walking thing. Last Saturday I went bowling with friends. Great time! They are some lively people, that's for sure. It's nice to be included. After bowling we headed to our cars. I'm walking towards mine and hit some black ice. Both feet fly forward and I land on my arse, square just above the tailbone. Everyone helped me up, asked about my well being and I insisted I was fine. Once I got to my van and started pulling out of the parking lot I began to cry. That fall really hurt. Such a big baby, I cried all the way home.
I was so tender and sore. On Sunday the act of sitting down or standing up was misery. Once I got to either position I was fine, for the most part. I didn't get on my bike again til Thursday. I was ok for the most part at the Trainer Tour. Supposed to keep my HR in aerobic area so didn't work real hard. Last ten minutes my bum was getting sore. Saturday I finally got outside to ride, first time since New Year's weekend! I rode the club ride, to and fro. Got in 27 miles. It was cold at the start, but we warmed up quick. The wind was fierce in places, but that's what riding outside is all about, right? The elements. I felt pretty good, last ten miles my butt was tired however I didn't care.
This morning I finally got to ride my mtn bike again. Twenty showed up at the fire roads of Deam Lake. We split into two groups, fast and not so. Temps were about 28, but I think it was colder at the top. There was a pretty good covering of snow and it was crunchy. As always, my heart rate spiked while riding on the paved road to the trail head. I think it's the 26" wheels, you spin a lot more which increases breathing and HR. I was feeling great at the beginning. People ahead of me were in sight. There were climbs, but offset by downhills. We got a little bunched up in some places. Eventually though the climbs outnumbered the descents. I just couldn't keep up with everyone (or catch back up). With each hill I had to pull and each time I pulled my butt started hurting more. Finally the last one passed me and I was the caboose. Only problem was that this was posted as no drop. Always puts some pressure on the last one (psychologically self imposed, not by anyone else). One of my friends had turned back, having a not so great morning. Finally, I reach a point where everyone had stopped to wait and regroup. I had no idea how long they'd been waiting. But as soon as I arrived they started again. No time to really catch my breath. This is where self imposed guilt comes in. I wanted to rest a bit, but it was cold and was sure everyone was getting cold. Not a good thing when riding. I heard one of the guys on the front say that this was going to be a long ascent, but nothing real steep. It took about 5 minutes, maybe less and everyone was out of sight. Another 5 minutes and my quads starting burning. I shifted gears and tried to find a sweet spot, just never seemed to get there. Then I hear bikes behind me. The fast group had gone a different route, but then came on this one. One by one they caught and passed me. I think I was off my bike taking a breather while one passed. He asked if I was ok. Yep, I'm fine. I would clear a hill to see more empty trail ahead of me. I wondered how far ahead everyone was, but there was no way for me to know. I never saw any of the rest of them except for one. He was leading our group. I got almost to the top of the trailhead to the pavement and he was coming towards me, asked if I was ok. I said yeah. He said the others had gone ahead to do an out and back. I asked which way to go to head back to the cars. My heartbeat had been in my ears the whole ride to this point and my quads were aching like crazy and my butt was outright hurting. I just wanted to recover and get warm.
He pointed me to a trail I knew. It was downhill most of the way and I got very cold. It was exhilarating though. I flew down much faster than I had the two previous times in the snow.
So, not sure what to do or think. I love to ride my mtn bike. It's probably not smart to ride the fire roads alone. (not sure I'm very smart) But I won't ride with that group again, not for a long time. I don't know, but today I was no where near their fitness level. I'm sad. I want to ride and have fun. I'm shocked at how out of shape I felt today.
I changed clothes at the van, cranked the heat and drove home. I shivered the whole way. I shivered for 30 minutes after I got home. I'd commented on my facebook status that "I'd like someone to fix me some hot chocolate please". A friend said that was a high maintenance comment. I don't think I'm high maintenance. I was being silly since there's no one here but me. I fixed my hot chocolate and fell asleep. I slept over an hour! which is crazy since I slept 8 last night.
I really am not sure how to feel. I try to do the things I say that I will do. Maybe I need to understand what other people's definitions of things are. I'm conflicted. I thought no drop meant no one would ride alone at the back. At the same time I would've felt worse if someone had had to be with my slow ass.
I don't make plans and not show without a call. I do my very best to follow through. I should stop with my expectations. I need to be realistic, both about what other people say and do as well as what I'm capable of doing athletically.
But I don't want to resign myself to mediocrity! I need to understand what's up with my fitness. I'm not thrilled about today's performance. I have tomorrow off. Maybe I can ride trails early and then the road bike later in the day.
I have signed up to do this fun thing in March with a fellow lady Rogue-racer. I need more base miles to prep for it (as well as the racing season ahead). Sub9 Death March is going to be a FUN thing. plain and simple. two-person teams riding 50-60 miles on fire roads, single track and pavement searching for cemeteries. Maybe I should take the cross bike back up to Deam Lake. If the ice melts.