We have had an unbelievable warm winter. Frankly, I think Puxatawny Phil was drinking when he exclaimed 6 more weeks of winter!
Saturday, the DC Tri MoCo Mafia decided to hit up a hilly ride and I reluctantly agreed to go. Athena had not been outside for an extremely long time and she really wanted her wheels to taste pavement. My fears from my first ride ever set in and I was freaking out.
EVERYONE that had RSVPd to the ride was experienced, training for at least a HIM... and then there was me. The inexperienced, heart patient.... ugh. But starting is half the battle, so I packed my gear and was ready to head out.
The ride had many break aways... meaning ways to cut the ride short. I was NOT interesting in the 30+ mile hilly ride for my first ride outdoors, so I opted for the 25 mile ride, which meant at 10 miles, I was on my own.
I did manage to hang with the group for a little while. At one point, SuperDave came back to make sure I was okay... everyone had turned and I was far enough behind them that I may have missed it (despite having my own cue sheet). He offered some advice. Later, Ironman rode along side of me and encouraged me. It is great to be a member of a supportive group. Makes me feel more comfortable... and that I don't suck too bad.
At the 10 mile mark, the group had been waiting for at least 5 minutes for me - mainly because we had two really steep inclines and I sort of stink at hills. A couple of them ragged me about not continuing with them, but I knew my limits. I did not want to push too hard with a long run the next day.
I am not going to lie, it was tough by myself. I may not have pushed myself hard enough, but my HR remained in the 170 because it was so hilly. Since speed wasn't in the cards due to hills, I really tried to work on my form. As I have noted before, I have never rode more than 10 miles without chaffing my lady parts, so instead of getting fitted (yes, I KNOW this is essential) or buying a new seat (Again, I know... probably need too), I tried to sit on my sit bone. I didn't chafe as bad as in past rides, my sit bone was sore the next day, but it still wasn't pleasant.
I was glad to be done. Group ended up doing 35+ and my 27 seemed to be just right for me. My quads were not SCREAMING like my first ride outside last year, my calfs did not cramp up like last year... and it didn't hurt to pee - well, not as bad any way.
So I am saying it was a SUCCESS!!!
Later, Ironman texted me to say that he thought I did a great job and that I was doing way better than he was at the same stage. To hear that coming from an Ironman... sort of makes a girl feel good, you know!!!!