Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Don't Be Such A Wuss Bag


I don't particularly like riding my bike. I mean, I like a nice leisurely ride around Sunriver on a cruiser or out with the kids on the bike path...maybe even a 20 miler with friends, but this 50, 60, 70 mile crap is ridiculous. It hurts. It takes a long time. It hurts...
...and I'm not very good at it. I'm low moderate. That's the part I hate the most. If I was strong and fast, I might enjoy myself more, but as it is, I mentally beat myself up ride after ride.

So when I arrived at the lake swim Sunday morning (in the pouring rain) and saw that only about 8 people showed up and only 4 with bikes and those 4 are in training for Canada Ironman...I was a little perturbed. I had seen the cue sheet and it was lengthy. I knew that I could not keep up with these guys and would more than likely get lost - plus the whole "group" ride thing would become a solo ride - not something I really want to do for 70 miles.

The swim was great. I felt strong for all 1.5 miles... although underfed. The swim started late and we took longer than I had planned. Then we tried to get dry and warm before heading off on our bikes, which set us back an extra 45 minutes. By the time we got on the road, I knew that making my Mother-in-law's birthday dinner on time was in deep jeopardy. More people (swim wusses) showed up in time for the bike but skipped the cold wet swim and as I scanned the crowd, I realized that I now had about 5 Ironman finishers and 5 Canada Ironman in training people to contend with on this very dreary day. BUT...two more people showed up that I could hang with, so off we went. Stop and go. Stop and go. I hate these kinds of rides. Finally fell into somewhat of a groove around mile 40...only to have someone flat and we all held back to wait, which was to our detriment. We got so cold...and he had such a hard time changing the flat with cold wet fingers. 15 minutes later, with the tube finally in place, he broke the stem trying to pump it up. Start over. By this time, I knew that 70 miles was not happening for me on this day. I could not let down the family, so I scooted back to the lake with only 45 miles on my odometer. Most people only went 10 miles further, so I don't feel too bad. I know that with the big party fundraiser the night before and weather conditions as they were, probably not too many of the team even got out to ride that day.

But this brings me back to my riding skills. I made a commitment to start riding on Tuesday nights with a couple of friends. After Sunday's ride and seeing the great riders holding back to hang with us slower riders was of course viewed by me as a nice effort on their part, but also makes me mad at myself for holding them back from an all out strong fast ride. It made me want to tell my Tuesday night people that I'm out. I don't want to hold them back...but I also know that if I commit to these Tuesday rides, I WILL become a stronger rider...like they are!

Tonight it is just me and two of THE strongest female riders I know. I'm sure I'll get dropped, but I'm tired of being this wussy about the whole thing. I know they will make me a stronger rider, too... so I'm going. And then...since we won't be done until after the kids are already in bed, I'm going to join them in a nice hot tub and I'm going to try to let some of this stress, that is mounting daily, slip away.

I'm at that point where it has just become too much. We all need a nice summer break and it cannot get here soon enough!! 38 more days. Just 38 more days. I can do this, right? RIGHT!

26 comments:

TeamMancuso said...

YES YOU CAN!!! I'm not the strongest cycler myself. But I'm betting you are better than you think!(aka.. mamarunsbarefoot)

Dawn said...

WOOT! YES you can!!!!!! I'm here cheering...and totally get this!
If I lived closer I would bike (behind) with you:)))))

(Just) Trying is for Little Girls said...

Yes, you can do this! You are a strong, determined (and a little bit crazy) woman!

Kovas said...

Enjoy becoming a cycling demon!

misszippy said...

Yeah, the one thing that stinks about group cycling is that it always takes MUCH longer than it would solo. However, like you said, 70 miles with company is a lot more enjoyable.

You WILL get stronger from riding with stronger people, so keep hanging onto their wheels. And enjoy that hot tub afterwards. You'll get through it!

greekmelie said...

You can totally do it!

Julie said...

You get it done!!! Like you I'm trying to do some of my riding/running with faster people so that I will put out more effort to get faster. And you will!!!

Michael said...

I think you are AWESOME!!! and you would out bike me anyday! I went on a group cycle last year...and it was only a 15 mile ride and I got dropped. I had no idea where I was or where I was going. I almost started crying. Needless to say I haven't tried it again. They said it was for all levels, but they meant only all good levels. I am currently feeling just this way about Masters Swim. I'm not anywhere close to the same league as the people I'm swimming with, but I know it will make me stronger. IT takes courage and guts to get out there and train the way you are training. Just keep it up! Only 38 more days and it will all pay off!

Abby said...

My summer break just started this week, and it feels SO nice! I'm still technically working, as I'll be spending the summer researching and writing, but not having to go into school makes such a difference. One more month and then you'll be free!

Penny said...

You can do this. Look how far you have come. You are a strong lady.

Nikki Kendall said...

HELL YA YOU CAN DO THIS!!! Remember why you do this and remember who you do it for! GO TEAM!

Big Daddy Diesel said...

Something is in the air, the last post I read before this one, was about the same thing, being frustrated on the bike.

I am on a bike team, I am also the slowest person on my bike team, we have training together, I call it Hammerfest. Last year, the first 9 rides, I got dropped, they didnt care that I got dropped, you hang or fend for yourself, no slowing down for the slow people. But week after week after week, i was able to stay with them a little longer, a little farther, then finally I made a whole practice with out getting dropped. So I know what you want to do will work, i did it myself. It takes time and effort and you will do this. Suck on that wheel for dear life and become the biker you dream about

Jill said...

I hear ya on the bike thing, it just takes for freaking ever to do those long rides - ugh. I have only ventured up to 52 and it was a long time...and I mostly cycle by myself. But you can do it, I know you can...hang in there!!!

Teamarcia said...

I'm so glad you're going with the 'strong girls'! I need to get up some nerve and do the same one of these days.

P said...

Of course you can do this!! You are a total rock star and not a wuss bag at all! I totally hear ya on hating to hold others back, but wanting to benefit from riding with stronger cyclists. I ride with my husband sometimes, which is a huge benefit to me and probably nothing but a PITA for him.

My Life and Running said...

You're amazing! Wish I could come ride with you!

ajh said...

You are so not a wuss! You are going on incredibly long rides and swimming with the "big guys." I think you are also one of the hard core people just not as fast as you want. You will get there. I admire you for getting out there and doing what isn't easy. You go girl!

CautiouslyAudacious said...

First of all there are a lot of ppl that can't ride that far so you are not a low to moderate rider, the problem is that you are comparing yourself only to athletes I do this a lot too. I have this problem when I show up for runs with my running group, I get beat up from the tough trails and much faster runners, but I just keep showing up! Second it is very hard to find the right group that fits you in cycling I am about to try my 3rd group in a couple of months. Keep it up you are doing awesome!

Julie said...

Awww...you are all so good to me! I'm heading out now for my strong girl ride! Wish me luck :D

Rene' said...

you can do it! i can't wait to read about how well you did!

Pam said...

You've got this in the bag!!!

Mike said...

Chasing and getting dropped is a great way to get faster. Everyone needs a rabbit to chase. I chased a group of 4 cyclists I happened across tonight and was able to maintain a 2 mph higher pace trying to reel them in. I never caught them, but had a better workout trying.

Nicole Wagner said...

Julie you are amazing! I HATE bike riding and I'm REALLY not good at it...the longest i've ever lasted on the bike at the gym is 20min and that was gruelling! I'd love to do a a tri some day but it is so intimidating. you are going to do GREAT!!!!

FruitFly said...

I am exhausted, cold and miserable just from reading this. 70 miles is like driving from Roseburg to Eugene! That's crazy. You're awesome for being able to do all of this!

Katie said...

I'm actually realllyyyy afraid of road biking :/ I'm working on it because I have a tri I'm committed to doing and a new road bike, but the whole thing makes me nervous. I'm gonna tell myself "Don't Be Such a Wuss Bag" lol :D

Small Town Runner said...

I hope that hot tub was NICE...

So proud of your tri training, Julie!