Monday, July 18, 2011

Pain and a scary ride

This week has been painful for me on my bike.  I even tried a shorter stem on my bike but I think that it is too short.  Going to have to give Coach Houle from D2 Cycling a shout to see if he can help.  I have a sharp searing pain in the my shoulders.  Both sides and it is really bothering me even off the bike and days later. 

I had a couple of great rides this last week and one very scary one.  Wednesday was my normal St. John's Cycle ride, 22 miles of really good riding.  Had a great time.  Feeling stronger and faster each and every week.  THis is a good thing.  Saturday I did solo 21 miles leaving from the house.  I just didn't have to desire to drive 30 minutes to Lake Mary that morning.  I left the house at 7:45 and was back just after 9.  I felt strong and happy.  Averaged 16.5 miles solo.  The experts say that in a pace line that would be more like 18+.  Hell yeah.  I was happy.

Now on to my scary ride.  Since I live on the East side of town, I decided to check a LBS (local bike shop) ride.  They have just started this ride.  It a new "thing" for them.  I was nervous to say the least.  My first clue that this was going to an "interesting ride" was when we rolled out of the parking lot and 5 of the 25 riders didn't have helmets on!  But once we got on the road my nerves turned to fear.  Running red lights, no communication, no pace line, you name it.  Just a mass of riders riding on the road together.  I should have turned around and gone back alone.  I talked myself out of it several times honestly.  I stayed was in the back and just stayed ever vigilant of my surroundings.  The beginning of the ride started off on the trail which for any road cyclists this is just scary unless you are alone.  A big group of cyclists on a very busy trail with other cyclists, runners, families.... it just isn't safe.  ESPECIALLY when no one is calling out ANYTHING.  wow

We finally made it on the road.  Things calmed down a little.  I got in the back of the pace line and just spun.  We were hauling ass!  It was somewhat of a relief to be on the road in a single file line getting some speed on my tires but that was short lived.  We started dropping people.  Riders that had never been on the road before.  Riders that weren't on road bikes.  The group of 25 people split into 4 groups!  I was shocked.  Because I had been riding in the back of the paceline (trying not to DIE) I ended up in the last group.  We didn't go over 17 / 17.5 on the way back to the trail.  Once we hit the trail the speed dropped to 15.  By this time people it was dark outside.  Pitch black, on a trail, in a group of 7 trying to get back to the shop.  I was so done mentally by this point.

I am an equal opportunity cyclists and I love to support my local bike shops but I just don't think that I can do this ride again.  I was more mentally exhausted after that ride than I was physically.  I rode with such tension in my body. 

I can say on a positive note that I met some very nice people on the ride.  It was nice to meet the owners and chat with them.  I wouldn't mind riding with them personally again.

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