Enjoying the Ride

By , Apr 26, 2015

I have very intentionally never raced before because I never wanted biking to feel like work. It is my place to unwind and decompress. I get a lot of time to think, and I solve a lot of my problems in the saddle. Of course it’s a lot more effective when I am out front of the group I am with and not chasing behind them, but I’ll take it any way I can get it.

Today was my longest and hardest day of my training (so far). It almost didn’t happen when I couldn’t find a partner to join me at 6:30AM on a Saturday. I mean, I was being accommodating by offering a sleep in until 5:30 (yes I said sleep in). The ride was almost lost a second time when I opened the door and it was 35 degrees outside at that ridiculous hour. But I am motivated by the team and I am committed.

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I had just dropped off my riding parter after 2 hours on the road, and I headed to do some hills to get in another hour in when the ride started to feel like work. I found myself alone questioning what I was doing. That’s when the snow started falling, with a healthy mix of ice pellets for good measure. Here I was, 40 miles into my ride and I was huffing and puffing at the top of Hill Top Road (near the Avalon area of Patapsco State Park…if you know it you’ll appreciate the story more). I had one more hill yet to come on the ride, and  I was planning to run still, and it was snowing! Really? As a Canadian I am used to biking in snow in June, so April shouldn’t have been a shock, but this is Maryland! All I could do was laugh (and I tried to take a picture which didn’t exactly pan out). Clearly, someone was sending me a message. I pictured Casey sitting there saying “I appreciate the effort this morning, but if you think what you are doing is hard, you haven’t even scratched the surface!”

As I descended the other side, with my head cocked sideways, one eye closed, the other squinting and ice pellets stinging my cheeks I couldn’t keep the smile off my face. I appreciate the lesson today Casey. Thanks for supporting my journey!