Wednesday, June 24, 2009

"I am NOT buying you a bike"

This past December, I told my hubby, Wade, that I was thinking of riding in the MS150 charity bike ride. Of course, he gave me the grumpy "Yea, right" look. He also told me he was not buying me a bike ... in fact, he told me that more than once and everytime I brought up this topic ... in fact, he said it so many times that I was getting pretty annoyed at him. What do you mean, 'you' won't buy me a bike? I'm gainfully employed too. I'll buy it myself. But I can't say I blame him ... I was not a likely candidate to start doing something athletic. So I had to prove to him that I was serious. Well, after a few months of spinning and losing some weight, he started to believe that I wasn't joking around. So not only did he buy me one bike ... I now have TWO bikes!

Why two bikes? Well, the first bike was a 'budget' bike ... a practical purchase. It was inexpensive and was a recreational bike that I could ride on the roads or on the trails. It works great, is comfortable and a really nice bike. But when I started going on some group rides, I realized I needed a 'road' bike to keep up. I was always trailing behind everyone else. I guess the tires, the weight, and the aerodynamics of the bike really do make a difference. So I contemplated trading my Cannondale. However, I decided against trading. I wanted to keep it for the trails.

So a few weeks ago, after riding with the BBC and being the slow poke, I declared half way through the ride that I was ready to buy another bike. Immediately following the ride, I drug my sister with me to the bike shop. Our 'bike guy', Brian, fitted me for a new bike and had what I needed in stock ... a Specialized Dolce designed specially for women (Dolce means 'sweet' in Italian). I almost purchased it on the spot, but thought I better talk to Wade first. Three days later, I picked up the new bike. Not only did I get the bike, but I broke down and got the clip-in pedals and shoes that everyone kept telling me would make such a difference.

Well, the bike has made a difference ... although I'm still a slow poke, but not quite AS slow. I'm still getting used to the pedals and shoes (and, yes, I took a tumble thanks to them), but I'm convinced that they do make a difference.

Wade has been so supportive. This new venture has cost quite a bit of money to get started and alot of my time, and he has not complained once. I think he is proud of me.

And I think he likes my smaller gluteous maximus. :-)

More catching up

June 20 - Spinning w/Chrissy ... Had to put up with Nazi woman ... enough said (see a previous blog entry for an explanation).

June 21 - 27.5 miles ... w/Chrissy ... Started at my house through Sharpsburg, Weitzel Hill Rd (scary!), Rt. 36 to E.Freedom, old 220 to Claysburg & Klahr & back to Roaring Spring & home. Nice ride, a few good hills. Beautiful day but very windy!

June 23 - 19.4 miles ... solo ... Started at my house ... Cove Lane to Curryville to Woodbury ... back through Martinsburg & home. Was having some anxiety on this ride by myself. The hills (going down) still freak me out. Gotta get over that!

I noticed a nice side effect of riding ... I can actually feel the triceps in my arms. Wow!

One month to go before the big ride. I HAVE to start logging more miles!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Catching Up

Here I am again falling behind on my blogging. There's just not enough time in the day. Well, this past week has been a bust as far as riding goes thanks to the rain, work, and just life in general. I haven't ridden since Saturday the 13th. Here's my activity since my last blog entry ...

June 1 ... Spinning

June 3 ... Spinning

June 4 ... 19.4 miles - Lots of firsts ... first ride on my brand new wheels ... first time with clip-in pedals/shoes ... first flat tire. Rode with Chrissy, Jody, and Spokes & Skis group in Hollidaysburg - Canal Basin/Canoe Creek.

June 6 ... 20.02 miles - Rode with Chrissy - East Freedom to Queen & back.

June 7 ... 21.2 miles - Road rash and bruises!! Rode with Chrissy & Jody around the Cove - Frosty Hollow/Hickory Bottom Road. Learned a hard lesson ... I didn't eat enough that day and I bonked!

June 8 ... Spinning

June 11 ... Spinning

June 13 ... 40.2 miles - With Chrissy, Jody, and Blair Bicycle Club - Altoona/Tyrone route.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Climb

Just for the record, I'm not a Miley Cyrus fan; however, after last Saturday's ride (May 30), I can totally relate to her new song "The Climb". (Click my title "The Climb" above to see the music video). I logged 46.1 miles that day and honestly didn't know if I would make it ... but I did. These lyrics are so fitting ...

'There's always gonna be another mountain
I'm always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be a uphill battle
Sometimes I'm gonna have to lose
Ain't about how fast I get there
Ain't about what's waiting on the other side
It's the climb'

Chrissy and I rode with the Blair Bicycle Club. It was my first time to ride with the BBC ... what a great group of people! We also had a few people from "Team Link" join us - Alex, Art, and Thomas.

We rode the first two legs of the MS ride (Hollidaysburg Jr. High School to Ritchey's Dairy, then Ritchey's Dairy to Williamsburg), then we rode from Williamsburg back to H-burg Jr. High via Scotch Valley. Between the hills on Reservoir Road, the hills on Cove Lane & Cross Cove Road, and the hills on Scotch Valley Road, I could not have pedaled up one more hill if someone would have been pushing my bike! Here's a shot of our map and the elevations. Click on the image for a closer view.

I was ALWAYS the last one to get up the hill, and numerous times, the group was waiting for me at the top (again, great people!). They would not let me behind, even though I was slowing them down. I did lose the battle on one hill towards the end of the ride ... I ran out of power about halfway up, and had to get off the bike and walk. (It wasn't the hill in this photo though.)

About half way through the ride, I declared that I would be buying a new bike. Yes, I just bought a new bike (my Cannondale Quick comfort bike), but in hindsight I should have bought a road bike. More on that topic to come in a separate blog entry!I have seven more weeks to train for the MS150 ... it will be a challenge, but one I am looking forward to!