Today was a first. A real big, eye opening, oh my goodness, FIRST. There is a weekly ride that happens on Saturday mornings from a local cycling spot that is supposed to be insane. Like, not one single girl shows up insane. Like 60 spandex clad guys looking every single person up and down insane. Steve wanted to see how I would fare. He explained the situation, I will get dropped. And probably quickly. It will be insane, the guys are really fast.
He also gave me some goals. Don't let gaps open ever, ride very aggressively, and when you get dropped ride really really hard, find another dude to work with if you can. Don't give up. The ride makes a U-turn so when the group comes back by make sure you are going fast enough to hop back on the freight train.
Wow. We get started and there are oodles of large thighed spandex clad dudes. I got myself into the pack and tried to stay very conscious. On my game. I did eventually get dropped and I very much did not give up. I continued to hammer, as hard as I knew how. I made a U-turn when I saw a fellow teammate (Kim) and we started back, waiting for the freight train. It came by, odly quiet, with a whistle from Steve to hop in hard.
And you know what, i did. I rode my butt off, like as fast as I could go at every moment. We were going up and down hills and I was hanging on for dear life with a huge smile on my face. I ended up in the back, fighting to stay on, and as we approached the back side of chatfield, off I went again. My wings had been officially ripped off. Did I let up? No sir. I found another dude, we worked together through the park. I bunny hopped the speed bump and then later a big pot hole.
Yea, bunny hopped. I looked down...who is this girl? I don't bunny hop anything. At this high speed I felt strong, and relaxed, my form was efficient, and I was killing myself. The thought of puking came up, and I was kinda impressed that I took myself to that point.
And then like that it was over. This nice guy I had been working with showed me the official end point and even told me to beat him to it. So gracious. Ha.
Looking back, it was one of those endeavors that I learned a lot from, but that also hyped me up a bit. It's a new challenge. I want to do it again to see if I can hang on for longer, ride better in the group, be more aggressive, work better with others when I get dumped off the back. Lots of lessons, lots of eductation today.
Have you had your wings ripped off recently? Maybe it's time?