Would you call me crazy if I asked for seconds?
That’s all I could think of as I was bent over a park table upchucking whatever food I had that day… four miles on the bike and I am coloring the pavement different colors… Would I be officially crazy if I wanted to do this for a second round?
Prior to the trip I called every bike store in a 70 mile radius looking for a road bike. Every store but one only had mountain bikes to rent (give you a good idea of the type of area I am in). Right after I dropped my GF off at the airport I made a beeline for some small country store in the middle of nowhere. As I walk in I see the only road bike they have for rent sitting atop the shelf. It almost had a heavenly glow about it that was drawing me in… saying pick me, pick me!!!
The second I sat down on the bike I knew instantly it was to small… but running short on options I fork over the cash on a pay-by-day basis and happily take it out of the store. I threw the little frame into the car and take off for another 40 miles before I find the place that I want to ride.
Now a smart person would pick an area where you can spend a few miles getting warmed up and getting acquainted, but I am not here for the pleasantries… I am here for another reason. Go hardcore or go home. I start at the bottom of the hill and take off. Quickly my 20+ mph turned to 17, then to 16 and then to 15 (maybe lower) and I was able to hang around that for a while. The first 2.75 miles wasn’t too bad. Nothing that I haven’t done before… (it was still 95% up hill) but the real climb starts right now.
I start jumping up out of my saddle, pounding away inch by inch. I can feel the temperature starting to drop as I am gaining elevation and my ears are popping. My seat saddle sways back and forth and all I could think about was the water fountain that’s at the top. I looked at my Garmin and it’s somewhere between six and seven miles per hour. At this point I am starting to think that running this would have been a FASTER option, but I came here for this hill and this hill alone.
The worst part of the climb is the last .5 miles to the top. I am now at a combination of sitting for two revolutions and out of the saddle for three or four. It’s the only thing that could keep me going.. my legs were on fire, my chest was burning, but I couldn’t let this hill beat me. My Garmin is flashing 3 MPH and I all I can do is laugh to myself and think how STUPID I am to voluntarily put my body into situations like this. But each push gets me closer and closer to the top. Finally I reach the crest. OMG it felt soooo good!! But only for a second.
Four miles on a bike = 25-26 minutes = almost a 2000 ft elevation gain over four miles
That second of joy was quickly killed as I instantly felt sick. I got off my little angel that took me up to the clouds and set her against a tree as I made it about 10 steps to a picnic table before I started to lose my lunch for the day… and all I could think of… I think I want to come back for seconds tomorrow…
Afterthoughts: I didn’t ride to much further that night, I was sick to my stomach. I really need to look up why that happens to you when you work your ass off… but anyway. The ride back down was crazy fast. I rode the brakes down that steep part and still hit 40 mph.. but looking back at that ride… it was worth it! I love the challenge, I love the burn, and I love to know that I go and do what others might think is crazy.