I'm cheating a little bit on my time this week, but for good reason. I usually work out alone - it suits me better as i can create my own schedule and i can also workout as hard as i want. In the past when i've worked out with others it's been through careful selection - usually i choose someone significantly faster and fitter than i am knowing that i will suffer badly trying not to slow them down (which is the point). But selecting the individual is key, and this is why i've tended to shy away from joining a group ride for my cycling workout.... but this week i made an exception.
You see, the local bike store recently added a wednesday evening 'hard' ride to their group ride schedule, which previously included sunday 'casual' rides and no-drop rides. I wasn't able to fit in a ride during the day so figured i'd check it out. I knew about three quarters of the 12 riders that showed up (a big number for Grand Forks), and at least a handful of them were without a doubt better cyclists than i was. I was pumped.
Predictably, the riding started out easy as we headed out of town. When things didn't immediately pick up on the less trafficked roads, i figured i'd take matters into my own hands and attacked.
A couple riders immediately jumped on my wheel and a few others jumped the gap so that there were seven of us all together. 10 minutes later the number was down to 5. The next 40 minutes were a series of brutal attacks that left me barely able to stay on the wheels - and then unable to - of some of the better riders. Ouch. Turns out most of the guys were hurting too though, and as i caught the group after they'd slowed slightly on our approach back into town i decided to make one more run - i put my head down, settled into aero position (my road bike is still set up for triathlon and i decided i was going to use all my advantages... more cheating) and set the fastest pace i thought i could sustain for 5 minutes.
I created a sizable gap - but not sizable enough - i was caught by first one, then a second rider, right as we hit the overpass that marked the start of stoplights and traffic. My legs were knackered - it was a great ride, but double the 45 minutes i'd planned for.
So long story short, i'm going to end up a bit over time this week, as i didn't cut anything else out. In truth, i might end up over time next week as i'm visiting my brother (and race partner) in Bend, OR and i hear he has at least one training mission planned for me, and knowing his training style (almost the opposite of mine in terms of volume) its probably going to be at least a couple hours long.
So be it. They say cheaters never win. Good thing i'm just happy to come in second or third....
YogaSlackers Women Who Sport
9 months ago