Wednesday, July 22, 2009
If you cheat on miles IT will come back to haunt you sooner or later
In my case it was sooner. My task was to ride 4 hours today, steady state, not to look for hills, but not to avoid them either. I had planned on leaving the house at 10AM only to be reminded that Chris had a dental appointment at 1:30. So I waited until we got back. I was so sure that 4 hours that late in the day would be an issue. I was almost ready to bail on the plan, but the guilt and the not wanting to disappoint Jon after we spent an hour planning my week helped me to drag my butt out the door. So I loaded up a bottle with perpetuem, a bottle with hammer gel, and a bottle with water. I headed out the door at 3PM and decided that White Pond would be a good trip, it was hilly on the way there, and the terrain moderated on the way back. I could also see if there was anyone out for an open water swim in the pond.
I was kind of hyped up for about 15 miles, then I hit that climb on 52, the one going out of Lake Carmel up to the Kent Primary School. Its about 1.5 miles long and a steady 6-7% grade, just enough to incinerate your legs slowly. I knew this climb was here but for some reason it started to get to my head a bit. I decided that I would refill my bottles at the deli near the top and turn onto Farmers Mills, a full 2 miles before White Pond Road. I was scheming to cheat. I actually even rationalized it with the fact that it was a route I have always wanted to explore and I knew that there was this big downhill shortly after the turn. So I blow by the deli, this was my guilt setting in, and I make the turn anyway, full knowing that my water bottles are 1/2 full and there is nothing for another 15 miles at least and it was a sunny route. I was tempting fate. Thinking about this now, I can almost see a little red guy sitting on my shoulder just waiting with a pitchfork to stick it to me. I was so psyched at the 1/2 mile steep downhill that came shortly after that turn, regardless of being sprayed with dirt from a dump truck. I was committed to this route now, there was no way in hell I was climbing that, it was brutal, at least 12-15% grade. On I go, and this short cut turns out to be one steep climb after another. That little red guy poking me in the ass and laughing all the way I am sure. I eventually arrive at White Pond, a good deal further than I had imagined it to be, maybe this wasn't really a short cut, but just a hilly pain in the ass way to get there! Good news, there were some open water swimmers. Something to try to arrange in the near future.
I stop long enough for a photo op and head out, pedaling towards Carmel, and water, 8 miles away. Thank God they were not hilly miles. I am really fatigued at this point, and parched. I down some of the hammer gel, and try to take the minimum amount of water so that it wont turn to a rock in my stomach and hope that I make it to Carmel without getting behind the curve.
I reached Carmel in no time, took a quick photo of Sybil Ludington and hoped on the path towards Yorktown. I am thinking at this point that the difficulty is behind me, the next 20 miles will be a piece of cake, its fairly flat, its got no traffic, and its shady. I am tired , hungry for dinner, and totally fatigued from the climbing on my short cut. This 20 miles was as difficult as they come. I survived, battling myself the whole rest of the way. Not daring to waver from my route. I arrive, detour to the lake, jump in and head home for dinner, completely spent.