Monday, February 18, 2008

Additional training will be required

T and I have signed up for the Uvas Triathlon which is still a ways away, on May 18th, but you know how these things like to sneak up on you.

Having heard some rumors of a 'steep' hill on the bike portion of the course, we decided to take a trip out there to check it out. I had asked a guy at work who bikes a lot if he had been out there, and apparently it's practically his back yard. He assured me there were no 'steep' hills (depending on your definition of steep, he clarified) out there and pointed the route out to me on a Google map. Well, at least we'd be armed with a map!

The first thing we noticed was how freakin' far away the thing is! I think we drove for about hour to get there. The second thing we noticed, as we arrived at the reservoir, was how *nasty* the water was. It was completely brown. Oh, man, I do not want to swim in that! The picture doesn't really even do it justice. I'd call it a mud pit.

The third thing we noticed was that it was cold. So we bundled up in practically all the layers we brought with us, clipped in, and headed out. It was a bit downhill to start with and as we all know, what goes down must go up. There were quite a few 'rolling hills' and my legs were not wanting to push or pull the pedals. I think I was still wiped out from the 40 miler on Saturday.

It was a pretty ride, through some ranch land and past some ginormous houses. At one point we passed a little stand of trees in an open field and a wild animal came charging at us from behind the trees. Luckily it didn't attack, but just wanted to show us who is *really* at the top of the food chain. Also luckily it wasn't really a wild animal, but a big dog. :-) Had my heart thumping for a while though.

I knew from my coworker's description that THE HILL should arrive once we turned onto Sycamore and soon enough we arrived at the turn. I kept looking ahead to see if I could see THE HILL. "Awwww crap!" Yep, I saw it alright. And it looked pretty dang steep to me. And I couldn't see the end of it, so I didn't know how long I'd be suffering for, but it looked like quite a while. Okay, up we go. And up. And I'm thinking "Why, oh why didn't I get that triple ring! Dang you Fred!" Fred's the guy who sold me Ruby. Sadly, I think he's going to bear my wrath, at least in my head, every time I hit a hill that makes me want to fall over. I hit my lowest gear and the hill was still going strong. Then before I knew it I was stopped at the side of the road, gasping for breath. We actually walked our bikes the last bit of the hill. Sad.

We got to enjoy a bit of a reward on the downhill side and pedaled our way back to the reservoir, where another 'rolling' hill awaited us right at the end. Man that was a tough one. I'm pretty concerned about managing THE HILL during the Tri, so T and I have decided we need to do some more hill work, and head back out there at least a couple of times prior to the actual event to tackle THE HILL. I think we'll eventually get it. And it might be much better if we don't ride 40 miles a couple of days prior to attempting THE HILL next time. :-)

16 miles covered
1 hour 11 minutes
13.4 mph average
29-ish mph top speed

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