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
Speed: 17.0 MPH
Cadence: 96 rpm
HR: 157 bpm
It's good to be back to my healthy self.