Monday, March 12, 2012

biking truths ...

Did you know that I am 20 days away from my first 70.3? And did you know that you don't cover the 56 mile bike leg on a trainer? Well, from the looks of my training, you might think that I was told otherwise.
 
You see, thanks to J's work schedule, the cold temperatures and my overwhelming fear of crashing, I haven't really gotten outside much to ride. If were telling the truth, since my crash last May, I've only rode outdoors two times - first, in January and then again, yesterday.

Oh, yesterday ...

Yesterday, was just a comedy of errors that resulted in revelation of quite a few biking truths.

  • Truth #1 - It is unsafe to bike without a helmet. When you ride on a trainer, you do not wear a helmet. Thus, when packing your gear for an outdoor ride, you must triple check for your helmet or risk showing up ill-prepared. Like I did. (Thankfully, I have an enormous head and I was able to borrow one.)
  • Truth #2 - When it is 40 degrees outside, wearing five layers on top, three layers on bottom, knee high socks, a ski cap and a pair of gloves with hand warmers is excessive. You only need FOUR layers on top, three layers on bottom, knee high socks, a ski cap and a pair of gloves with hand warmers. Be prepared to shed that extra shirt on the side of the road.
  • Truth #3 - It only takes about seven minutes for your toes to freeze.
  • Truth #4 - Hills are a b*tch. That is all.
  • Truth #5 - I am totally afraid of going too fast on my bike, breaking too hard and crashing. Downhills are evil and make me feel like I am going to die.
  • Truth #6 - A lot of motorists are poopshoots. Seriously, when there are two lanes, why can't you move over? Don't you know how freaked out I am of crashing? Oh, and while you're driving me off the road, why don't you honk? That would be fun!
  • Truth #7 - I love my bike. Like really love it. Once I get past all that fear, it's a freaking amazing bike.
  • Truth #8 -  The longer I rode, the less scared I became. At this rate, I will be over my fears by 2015.
  • Truth #9 - Laughing at yourself can be a heck of a lot of fun.
  • Truth #10 - Even if I have to put training wheels on my bike, I am going to bring it on race day.

23 comments:

Marlene said...

It took me a good few weeks of riding outside 3x/week to stop being terrified of crashing. And it took all season before my first race to not be terrified of going downhill. You will continue getting more comfortable out there and learn to appreciate the "free speed" of going downhill. :)

I give you SOOO much credit every day for facing your fears and taking your bike to the streets. I wiped out skiing 3 years ago and I still haven't gone near skis again.

chasingdownadream said...

LOL! This couldn't be more timely. I too rode outdoors yesterday. I really thought that due to all of my trainer rider, I would be a bit stronger, but I'm with you... hills are a ..... yep, they sure are. Keep at it! And yes, biking is bad a@@ and awesome. :)

Karen said...

There are way too many pieces of equipment in triathlon. I am constantly checking and re-checking to make sure i have shoes, helmet, sunglasses, whatever. The riding will get easier... At least you are out there riding, I would think getting back on a bike following a crash might be the hardest part.

Erika said...

I am right there with you! So far I've done all of my bike rides on my trainer. I can't get outside with my schedule, being by myself, with Julia, etc. And I'm absolutely terrified of crashing too - like beyond it. i have to get over it, though, as I have 112 miles of it during Ironman! You are going to do AMAZING at your race!!!

Alili said...

I always preferred riding in a race to just plain riding on the roads - felt much safer with all of the volunteers and police around!!

Amanda - TooTallFritz said...

I haven't crashed and but am still scared. I don't like riding on the road with cars going 3 to 10x my speed. I don't trust that they will NOT hit me. Going down hills is definitely scary. And I'm totally screwed if I pop a tired cuz I don't think I can change it on my own! My bike has been on the trainer since my 70.3 in Sept 2008. In all fairness, I did have a baby and have used the excuse since that I don't have time to ride (and that is true but he is 2.5 now) but it has to come off the trainer soon cuz I have a 70.3 in the books for Sept again. I think I can wait another month though... :o)

Good luck!!

Jill said...

You make me laugh! Yah, what's up with drivers not being kind to cyclists? I totally get scared on the bike, but it for sure gets better the more your out. I can't believe your race is so close...excited for you!

Kortni said...

Lucky for you Galveston is beyond flat! You are going to rock it!

Trish said...

You are so strong and brave! I drove my bike route today and was nervous in my car ;)

Stephanie Anne said...

It definitely gets easier. Keep practicing & you'll be ready for race day!

BigHappyFamily said...

I don't think I have biked outside since I was 15. Spin class? yes. Real bike? No. I can swim and run ... I could be tri material ... hmmmm ....

wtfree3 said...

Like @Kortni said - Galveston is beyond flat. There are no hills in that part of Texas, unless you count an overpass (like you have between the islands on that bike route). That's it.

Well, I cannot speak for the wind. Good luck.

Jessica (Pace of Me) said...

ok ... so, most of these pretty much sum up my fears about biking. i am admittedly way more scared of the swim portion of a tri, but the bike freaks me out too. i think i would learn to love it all - when i am ready to step in that direction - but now is not the time. i think you are going to rock your 70.3 and i cannot wait to hear all about it!!

Michelle said...

Only 20 days? Wow! You are getting so close!
Congrats on a good ride. The only way to learn all those things is to face them like a honeybadger! Atta girl.

Aimee said...

This was hilarious b/c it's sooo true! :)

Kurt @ Becoming An Ironman said...

Wow. Only 20 days left. You're going to crush it!

And "for real!" on the poopshoot motorists. As unsafe as it is, I can get very ballsy while on the bike. If people cut me off or ride too close, I'll ride further out into the lane to push them over. In CT we have a "Three feet rule" for all pedestrians; motorists have to give you three feet of room. Rarely do they ever.

Keep up the outdoor training for these last few weeks. Can't wait to see how much you love your first half!

Running Ricig said...

What I took from this post: You have a humungous head. :P

SupermomE12 said...

I am the biggest bike chicken either (and I just sort of pretty much hate riding) so I am super impressed with all you are doing! You are doing great and I can't wait to hear all about your first 70.3. :)

ajh said...

You will bring it on race day no doubt.

What kind of bike do you have?

Do you have any suggestions for sprint tri training plans? I may just try to get the workouts in this time without anything too specific. But I am looking around.

Running Girl said...

I give you a ton of credit for running outside, because I love my bike, but the outside running freaks me out. I have wanted to get into mountain biking forever (my dad is a huge mountain biker), but so far i've been sticking to running.

One day, I will do it!

H Love said...

Wow...this is breaking news about the trainer not being party of race day...hmmm? I too am scared of being on the road and I haven't even crashed, though I did fall over clipped and that was scary enough. You are learning so much!! Thanks for sharing your wisdom! You are going to be amazing!

Jason said...

All so true. So so true.

Learn to feather the brakes even when on flat surfaces and you won't be so afraid of going downhill fast.

You are going to kill Galveston.

I will have to tell you my Austin story one day of going downhill too fast and feathering brakes but I'll tell you in 21 days.

Laura Boll said...

20 days? That's so exciting... I want to do it some day, but this is not the year for me... but I'll be cheering you on!