Had my first two training rides last weekend! And I’m in worse shape than I thought.
I went to a category evaluation ride on Saturday—a relatively flat, 20-mile ride—and came out at 11.9 miles per hours average. That’s pretty darn slow. Now, granted, that was a 20-mile route with headwinds and a pretty impressive hill, but still…I have a lot of work to do!
Sunday’s ride was a quieter, 25-mile ride along a flat route in Sunnyvale. I did OK in it—the training ride leaders were really good about keeping track of everyone—but had trouble keeping up with people on the hills. I’m not a fast rider by any means, but I’m particularly bad at hill-climbing. That’s because I’m 5’0” and weigh 146 pounds! Granted, a lot of that is muscle, but it’s still a lot of weight to be hauling uphill on stubby little legs. So I don’t expect I’ll ever be a great hill-climber, but I can sure do a lot better than that. More stuff to work on!
One really cool thing happened on Sunday’s training ride—I was riding along in one of the Los Altos Hills backroads, and a wild turkey crossed the road! I couldn’t believe my eyes, but there it was in front of us, strolling across as if it owned the road. Wild turkeys are big! The one I saw was easily the size of a peacock, and it was gorgeous—black and bronze barred feathers, and a bright red wattle. I’d never seen a wild turkey before, so this was particularly special—I didn’t even know they lived around here! But those are the sorts of things you see while riding. (I saw a bobcat once, carrying a big ol’ gopher snake in its mouth…it just walked right past us as my boyfriend and I sat there on our bikes with our jaws on the floor.)
One thing is obvious, though: I’m gonna have to start wearing my tutu on training rides. Six or seven people asked me “Where’s your tutu?” So I’m going to wear my tutu at official training rides from now on. Clearly I must make more tutus. 🙂
Next week’s training ride will be with the Positive Pedalers (HIV+ riders), a “Jingle Bells” ride on Saturday the 17th. They’re collecting food for a local food bank, so I’m going through the pantry tonight to see what I can donate. I know I’ve got a bunch of foodstuffs that I’m never going to use…might as well do some good!
The ride itself is a flat ride, going out of Sausalito, about 21 miles…exactly what I need right now. I’m in pretty miserable shape, so two 20-mile rides are about what I can manage at the moment…last week I did a 20 and 25-miler, this week I may do 20 miles Saturday and try for 30 miles on Sunday. I haven’t yet decided whether to venture forth on my own Sunday, or go to an organized training ride. I rather think I’ll go off on my own.
I’ve emailed my coach from AIDS Lifecycle 2, asking him if he has space for me on his training schedule. He doesn’t coach many riders anymore—he loves doing it, but he earns a lot less from coaching than he does from the other stuff he does—but I’m hoping I can talk him into helping me out. With the knee injury, I feel like I need some professional guidance in order to keep from getting re-injured…and there’s no one better than Curtis!
But I’ve started my training, and though it’s a long way to go, I have five months to train…I think I’ll make it!
P.S. You can sponsor me at https://www.aidslifecycle.org/donate/form.cfm?n=1918 . My target is $5000, so every penny helps!