The ride had a 9, 23, 61 and 100 mile option.
This ride was a big milestone for many reasons. Of course, the gimp foot incident that happened on July 4th was at issue. Luckily, my “3 day 3 day 3 day” mantra for healing seemed to be working. While I couldn’t walk as easily on the foot, I could ride my bike. Whoop. So yay. I can ride.
This was a “ride” and not a race. Putting down 61 miles in the hills (ah, hem… mountains) was a good prep for Augusta 70.3 in less than 85 days.
Yoda and I took our sweet time on the ride. I was stoked to find PB&J sandwiches at the second rest stop. Yoda turned to fill her water bottle, and I had secured a sandwich and was in line for the Porta Potty before she returned.
Met SBM friends, Desta and Arpana, too at the rest stop.
But seriously, what in the holy guacamole kind of crazy was this ride? 5,500 feet of elevation gain? Truth be told, the most elevation gain that I have experienced in a single ride is 2,000 feet.
So I think adding 3,500 to that makes perfect sense. On
a gimp foot gimp feet. In the Georgia heat. Well, it did.
And three climbs that they call the “Sisters”?
What in the… the Big Sister, Middle Sister and Little Sister? The best part of the Sisters? Oh, nothing at all. They are all dirty little sister wenches.
The first 40 miles was quite enjoyable -also, fairly comparable to the weekend rides that the Expert and I put down at our favorite Harbins Park loop. Yoda and I were pretty pleased with our feelings and time at the second rest stop… until some Danny Downer said, “Oh you’ve done 2500 feet of climbing in 40 miles… now, you get to do 2500 feet of climbing in 20 miles! Ha ha!”
I’m no good at math, but I was pretty sure that I didn’t like that math.
The remaining 15 miles of the ride was a buster. I have never, ever gotten off a bike and walked up a climb before. Never.
Well, I had never met the Big Sister before. I “square pedaled” as far as I could, and when my heart exploded, I hopped off the bike. I was just glad that I didn’t roll backwards and hit my head on the Sister concrete. The heartrate chart does not do it justice. It was brutal.
The Middle Sister was a tad better, but I still took to a little walking. Yoda and I made it up the Little Sister.
Today was hard, but I grew as a cyclist simply by showing up and doing this ride. That is a big WHOOP and a smile.
I texted Coach Monster and told him that I was no longer terrified of the climbs. That yes, climbs sometimes suck (big time), but the shake-your-boots fear… seems to have diminished.
Coach Monster said he was proud of me, and that someday I will learn to smile when I see a climb coming up. I told him, I am close to smiling. But really, my first reaction to seeing a gnarly climb… is an instantaneous butt pucker. Coach M said that a smile and a butt pucker are not mutually exclusive.
So, there you go.
I start my *new job* tomorrow. I am excited, and nervous… especially about showing up on the first day with a sunburn and a limp. Well, they might as well know the “real me” from the get-go.
Have a great week friends!