After the last race I ran, I had resolved to taking some time off in hopes my hamstring and foot would heal up and feel better. It's definitely improved, but it's only been 2 weeks so I am still anti-running at least through September. However, I committed myself to at least cycle as much as my butt would tolerate.
Last week I spent 4 days riding 88 hot, sweaty, spandexy miles mostly through Aurora and Shalersville. AH even came out one night and dragged me through a hard 24.5 miles. I normally ride this route between 17.5-19.5 mph, but his easy cadence of 80ish made me feel slow and I desperately tried to hang on his wheel saying to myself "No chain motherf*cker, No chain" just like Lance Armstrong does. I was rewarded with my fastest time ever 20.5 mph...WOOT!!!
I was hoping to break 100 miles for the week but really who makes plans and sticks to them when you are on vacation??? Instead of a nice 2 hour ride on Sunday AH and I ate wings and cheese fries, watched Avatar and Terminator Salvation and pretty much spent the day laying around. It helped that my "brittany" as some call it was super sore and chafed from all the miles of riding.
This week I managed to get out for my loop on Monday at a hard effort and rolled through at 19.4 mph all by myself. My butt was still sore, so I started applying Neosporin to the area as the chafing resulted in some unspeakable nastiness. The good news is the lymph nodes down there that usually swell were NOT swollen. Yes, I know perhaps this is a gross and dirty conversation, but I can't be the only girl that this has ever happened to!
Tuesday, I chose a nice hilly route that had some nice climbs in Bentlyville and I switch backed a couple roads up and out of Chagrin River Road. I only managed 17.8 mph, but I just wanted to make all the climbs, while preventing my heart from exploding out of my chest. The Neosporin had definitely helped, but the bumps on the way home up Liberty were certainly a bitch!!
Wednesday I rested and yesterday, while I was hoping AH wanted to come over and ride again, he texted me saying he was feeling fluish. Great! I was on my own until I remember BH led a ride out of LifeTime. They were planning to ride 25 miles, so I told him I would pick them up at Hawthorne and Sulpher Springs. I got there in about 28 minutes and kind of rode around in a small loop waiting for them. It was less than 10 minutes before him DM and 3 other guys came flying by! I told him I could ride almost 18 mph through the hills and he said I would be fine, but as they flew by I hammered to try and catch them. There was no pace line and it seemed every man for himself. I guess some etiquette rules were being broken and some "man" stuff was going on as we raced up Chagrin River Road. It was okay BH helped me out by letting me act like a leach and stick to his wheel. I had picked them up at about 8.5 miles into the ride around 7pm, so I knew I would have to ride HARD to beat the darkness home. We rode up to Berkshire where the ride was meant to go but DM basically called BH out to ride up Old Mill and since I was the only girl, well I wasn't taking the easy way out and hung on BH's wheel until the climb started. DM is way too fast for me and he suggested we take it in our easiest gear and ride it like a hill should be ridden. That sounded like a great plan. I got dropped by the 3 guys, but that was by far the best I had ever climbed Old Mill. I wasn't hurting or out of breathe. It was about 7:40pm. We were running out of time. I figured I had until 8:30pm to make it home. We rode down Gates Mills to Brainard and then to Harvard where they split off. DM and BH were worried offering me a ride home in a car, but come on!! I knew what I was getting into. I checked my computer. I was at 25 miles in 1:29:xx. It was time to GO!! I turned my ipod back on and just started jamming on the bike. It is completely flat or downhill with the exception of one climb up Miles Road. I just kept pushing and thinking "Go you p*ssy!!, Go!!" It was nearly dark I had to take off my sunglasses, not to mention I could feel the air temperature dropping. I hammered away until I pulled in the drive in less than 35 minutes. I checked my computer...38.1 miles total. Holy cow!! That was a race pace for me (and yes it felt like it too).
Hopefully, I will be able to get in a few more rides this weekend, along with working Friday, Saturday and Sunday (LAME!!).
And then Monday, it starts again. I can't believe it's been a year already and I am in my last semester. I miss my classmates and without them I would not have made it this far, but the amount of studying and research, not too mention test after test after test...yuck!! It will certainly be the hardest semester thus far, but this time off has really de-stressed me and I know I can hang in there for 16 weeks...or there is always the alternative
Either way I am gonna have to HTFU!!!