First off I must acknowledge my gratitude to Mother Nature for an awesome riding weekend!! Even the wind was great, because as we all know, it's just the big M.N.'s way of making us stronger!!
I had a great ride again today. I was hoping to have someone to ride with, but Richelle had to work and Kels was in Vancouver doing the 1/2 Marathon. (She had a rockin' race by the way, but I'm going to let her give all the deets!) So a solo ride it was to be.
My schedule called for 2 hours 'hard' on the bike. Now let's think about this for a moment. Define hard. High heart rate? Straining legs? Lots of hills? Speed? Trying to keep up with Kelsey and Richelle after racing a 1/2 marathon? An uncomfortable saddle? It's all relative really. There are many definitions of hard.
As I started out on my ride my legs felt somewhat lead like, so already it felt hard. Well then, there isn't much one can do but press on! So I did. Following my 'staying in the moment' theory I focussed on what I was doing. I figured once my legs warmed up they might feel better later on, so the trick would be to get them warmed up.
I kept my bike in an easy gear and kept trying to go a gear harder every once in a while to test how they were. Slowly they were coming alive. Very slowly. It was hard. About the 50 minute mark I could get my bike into the big chainring and get some decent speed.
I got through the last two climbs on Grand Valley and headed east. My legs were working nicely now. Yay! I hit Horse Creek Rd and gave it all I had. I felt awesome.
You know, I think I might be getting stronger on the bike. It took a while to get the legs going, but once they did, I seemed to be able to spend a lot of time in the big chainring. I couldn't do that last year. That much I know. The other thing was I was getting some great speed. Not so much up the hills, although they weren't too bad, but on the flats I was going between 30-35 km/h. I kept thinking something was wrong with my bike computer. Ah yes, such confidence in myself!!
Thing is...even on the inclines I was keeping that speed and staying in the harder gears. Hmm, was this hard?? It actually didn't feel like it. I mean, I could feel my legs, but my heart rate was decent.
All of this is pretty exciting for me. I knew that improvements would happen naturally. Well, I hoped they would. It would seem this is what is happening though. Who knows, one day I might just be able to hold that speed right from the get go??
I could keep dreaming about tomorrow and what might happen, but I think I'm just going to savour this weekends rides and continue to focus on the now. Total distance for the weekend was 177 km. Very cool.
Peace out my friends!