Monday, April 1, 2013

Sucky Windy Long Ride

My thoughts are all over the place on this one.  The good news is that I got my 40+ miles done per the training plan.  The bad news is that it totally sucked and I'm sore and feeling very unsure of how in the world I will go 60 MORE miles in 8 weeks.

Friday morning, my husband and I extracted my road bike from the trainer and put on a new back tire.  I've come to the conclusion that I really never want to have to change a tire by myself on the side of a road.  I was happy to have his help and it still took longer than it probably should have.  The rest of Friday was pretty well shot with taking my daughter birthday shopping, dinner, mass, etc.  The weather was sunny and I prayed for that to hold over to the weekend.

Saturday it was cold and cloudy with rain coming in the afternoon during the 4 hour birthday party (note to self - 2.5 hours would have been PLENTY).  Cleaned up and chilled out since a ride seemed ill advised Saturday afternoon.

Sunday we did Easter stuff all morning and into the early afternoon.  But after cleaning up, I took off a little after 3 in hopes of knocking out my training ride.  Took grief from a snarky brother-in-law for leaving when I still had guests.  Wasn't my fault they didn't know when to go home. 

It was pretty sunny, 61° and windy.  Oh the wind - how I have NOT missed the wind.  My legs were feeling great until the first climb about 3 miles in.  And that climb ended with a turn into the wind that made the rolling hills out to Wardsville go by so slowly.  I stopped at Kleffner Ridge to check (using the MapMyRide phone app) and I was averaging under 10 mph (though now I'm not sure that was correct due to a data point error). UGH!  Only 11 miles in and I was not feeling good.  I rode out Wardsville Road and then looped back through to the church at the top of the hill before heading home again with a brief Scholastic loop in hopes of getting close to 30 miles in before I took a pit stop back at the house. 

Phone app said I'd only got 27.something in and it was starting to get cloudy (later learned it had a couple bad data points that lopped off about 3-4 miles).  I swapped my sunglasses for my regular glasses and got a drink (forgetting to fill my bottles back up - doh) and headed back out just as it started to lightly sprinkle.  I told my husband I would do loops down in the river bottom and up over the interchange until I got another 12.something miles in or it got dark or it started pouring - whichever came first.  That way he wouldn't have to come get me, as I'd never be more than about 3 miles from home. 

Went back out and rode around the relatively quiet industrial area climbing the interchange overpass a couple times and then looping Scholastic three times with a run up to the landfill entrance and another leg up to Fabick mixed in.  Phone died and I lost GPS tracking. After fiddling with the route (telling it to follow the roads and such), it looks like I added about 6.5 miles onto my ride unintentionally - maybe more as it doesn't show the last mile or so before home (going back up the hill).  I'm going to call it 46.5 sucky, windy miles.

I was super sore and pretty beaten up in spirit.  It took a LONG time to get those miles in and if I ride anywhere near that slowly, I'm not even sure if I'll make the cutoffs on my century.  I'll be so bummed if they force me to shorten due to time.  And two weekends between now and then are screwed up for the long rides by races (duathlon this coming weekend and sprint tri the first weekend of May).  How long was your longest ride before your first century? 

The climbing was definitely the suckiest so I think some of my short rides in the coming weeks will be hill repeats to try to get some of the feel for that back.  I was pleased that my bike handling didn't seem to go too badly even as I got crazy tired/sore.  I never fell (knock on wood).  I know the time in the saddle is a good thing so I'll try to leave the mental beating I took from this ride behind and let it blow away in the sucky wind.  Now it is time to go foam roll all my achey spots. 

Swimming = 5800 yds = 3.3 mi
Biking = 283.9 miles
Running = 68.0 miles


  1. Perfect!
    Great ride!
    I know you are thinking, "did he read the post?"
    Embrace adversity. It makes you mentally strong.

    In your century, find a group and draft.

    And in the future on windy rides, go with tri bike in aero position and you will buy 2mph..

    Brother in law? Next time hand him his hat and say "what's your hurry"

    1. Good point about drafting a group (though it makes me a little nervous as I haven't done much group riding and I'm slow that it makes it hard to find a group I can stay with). I don't own a tri bike nor aero bars so I'll just have to do the best I can and like you said "embrace adversity".

  2. My longest pre-century ride was 67 miles.

    I think you had an experience similar to mine a couple weeks ago. First long ride back off the trainer, pretty discouraging. Just remember that it's just one bad ride, and you still got it done. The next one will probably be better. And if it's not...more good mental training. :) Anybody can do something easy, right? It's only an accomishment when you have to work for it.

  3. You want training rides that suck because of wind and rain. It builds your mental toughness almost as much as physical. The first of everything is hard, including the first outdoor ride of the season. Milage on a bike can build fairly quickly.

    There's a secret to putting on tires at home. Warm it up with a hair dryer or heat gun till it's warm to the touch. Unfortunately that doesn't work on the road, unless it's sunny and warm.

  4. You are getting in some good long rides. Don't worry too much. My longest pre-century was 62 miles. Just take your time on the century and enjoy. Take fun breaks at the rest stops.

  5. Impressive, as I know how brutal Midwest winds can be!

  6. You can do it!!! You survived a bad windy ride you can do the 60 no prob. My dad is a little nuts and he claims to like riding in the wind, I hate it. But it will make you stronger :-)