Sunday, September 14, 2008

Feeling a Little Overwhelmed

I'm not quite sure how I feel about this Taupo training. It's not that I don't want to do the race, it's just that I'm not sure how I'm going to fit everything in. We're only on week three and I have to fit in three homework rides and two RPM classes. This is on top of the usual Saturday ride.

All the riding would feel more doable if it were daylight savings already. As it is I'm faced with trying to fit in a ride before or after work, part of which will have to take place in semi-darkness. The rides aren't particularly long but I only have a narrow window in which to get them done. There's a one hour ride, a 20-10-20 time trial and a one and a half hour hill circuit. Am I realistic in wanting to try to fit in a run or two on top of everything else?

I'm thinking my perfect getting-everything-done week might look like this:

Monday: Bike to the Terrace gym and do a weights session. Do a homework ride (the one hour?) after work.
Tuesday: RPM in the morning, Balance at lunch time, run after work
Wednesday: Bike to Penny Farthing to check Cleo in for her service, time trial on way home
Thursday: Weights in the morning, RPM at lunchtime
Friday: Balance at lunchtime or rest (or 1.5 hour ride)
Saturday: Gearshifters
Sunday: 1.5 hour homework ride or rest

The questionmarks around Friday and Sunday are because Nic and Leonie will be with us and of course I want to spend time with them. I'm contemplating taking Friday off work and if so will do my ride then. Besides, we're going to Maria Pia's on Saturday night and I may be hung over on Sunday!

I feel tired looking at all that!

I got today's 2.5 hour homework ride in, but it didn't go as planned. Julia and I were the only riders to show up which is a pity, because it was a gorgeous warm spring morning. We did the usual Mt Crawford climb, which always feels nasty for the first half until my climbing legs wake up. Julia was not having a good day and had to stop halfway. I had to wait quite a while and was about to go looking for her but a passing cyclist let me know she was on her way. I amused myself by watching a group of Marathon Clinic walkers going past when I should have been riding back to meet her.

Down the hill and Julia decided she wasn't up for Houghton Bay Rd or Sutherland. We agreed to ride around to Owhiro Bay, up to Brooklyn, then down Farnham Street through to Newtown and up over the top of Mt Victoria via Alexandra Rd. Unfortunately Julia's back started to give her serious problems and, when she finally made it to McKinley Crescent where I'd been waiting for her, we agreed she wasn't going to be doing any hill climbing.

I decided to salvage something out of my ride and continued up to the Ridgway, then turned back, lowered to my drops, kicked a few gears and caned it the whole way down to Owhiro Bay again. That bike seriously flies downhill! I caught Julia at Lyall Bay, having pushed hard through a nasty Northerly headwind. We rode back to Evans Bay together then I picked the pace up again riding into the wind all the way back to Freyberg.

With all the stopping and starting we were out for over two and a half hours but it was a frustrating ride and I still don't have a true sense of my hill climbing legs. I'm hoping Dee will take us up a few on Saturday. I need to start doing my homework rides at a faster pace as well.

I still feel like a much stronger rider on this bike though. I'm not getting blown past by anywhere near as many other riders now. I ride along with a fluidity that seems to be translating into speed. I'm also curious to discover that I am now also the left arm signal queen - something that never felt comfortable on Lola. A proper fit obviously makes a difference.

The other positive of today's ride - not one honk from an impatient, inconsiderate motorist. The only incident of note was a car flying past me then cutting in front of me into the left-turn lane at one of the sets of lights in Kilbirnie. I'd heard the car coming up behind me and had a funny feeling he was going to do just that. Thankfully Julia was close enough behind me to see him indicating and was able to call out a warning.

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