Monday, February 25, 2008

Conquering my Fears, Pushing my Limits

This morning my alarm decided to go off right in the middle of a REM cycle. The result? I woke up feeling groggy and slow. I checked the weather, since yesterday it was forecast to be about 40 degrees and sunny. Not so much. Try 31 degrees and cloudy. Now, normally I draw the line at 35 degrees for riding outside, but I decided to suck it up. What's four degrees?

I was loading the bike up on my car to head out to the country to ride, when a prissy looking sorority girl walked by me. She gave me a look that distinctly said "Oh my god, don't you know its totally like the arctic out here like?!"

Once I got out there, the ride started out like any other. The game plan was 21 miles, as usual. I had a strong focus on cadence, I worked a little bit on riding with one hand to learn better balance to make nutrition easier, I tried to keep my heart rate below 160. You know, the usual stuff.

Right when I was finishing up, though, something happened. The parking lot was to my left, but there was all this road ahead of me.

Forget it. I'm not done yet. Not today. I have unfinished business out here today. I have fears to conquer. I have limits to beat into the ground. I'm not turning in yet.

That decision was huge. Why? Let's recall the last time I rode 30+ miles. I bonked. Hard. At points I was debating calling someone to give me directions back to town, because my group had dropped me ages ago. After somehow finishing, I was demolished for the rest of the weekend. My legs were dead, my ass hurt like nobody's ass should ever hurt, my energy was completely drained miles before I even finished that ride.

I've had every reason to fear the distance. It left me raw and exposed to the elements, and left my limits laying all over the road. I knew the moment I decided to keep going, I might be in for the exact same mess all over again.

I was ready for it.

It never happened. I stayed strong the entire time. Not once did I feel like I was in over my head. Not once did I consider stopping.

Afterwards, my legs feel fine. My ass doesn't hurt. I've been completely functional all day; it had no effect whatsoever on my energy level. If this isn't progress, I don't know what is.

Here are the numbers for the day:

Distance: 30.99 miles
Time: 1:49:29
Speed: 17.0 MPH
Cadence: 96 rpm
HR: 157 bpm
Garmin Data

It's good to be back to my healthy self.


Run For Life said...

That's awesome! Those days are always so refreshing to have especially when the last one wasn't great. I'm glad it went perfectly for you!

RunToTheFinish said...

Some days it just all goes your way and man those are the days that make you realize why you love it all so much. I can't say I had that today, but I know I will again and love every minute of it.

Nancy said...

Now that's some progress!!


Jess said...

I hate it when the alarm does that. Well, I basically hate my alarm.