Tuesday, September 02, 2008

It was TERRIBLE—one of the worst of the season. And I have no real explanation why. It just was. Of 17 finishers I was 16; that is a little perspective. Any way, the whole Pro field started together men and women. They did all the call-ups and I was at the back of the pack—where I obviously belonged. The course started with essentially a 30 minute climb. I tried to keep a good position but I lost it on the dirt road. Maybe I went out too hard. Once on the single track I felt okay. I went down as someone passed me. It was entirely my fault. I yielded the trail a bit and somehow when I came back on the single track I hit a rock and fell over. I landed on my shoulder, but it was not big deal.

At about an hour into it, I realize that my arms are done. My triceps, biceps, deltoids, all were so fatigued. I do have a tendency to get nervous and clench the handle bars, but this was far worse than ever. I am talking the end of a strenuous 100 miler bad. This overwhelming fatigue set in just before a very technical, lengthy down hill—the type of descending where I would need a lot of control from my upper body. I made it down safely but it was slow and I bumbled tons. I even got off and walked a couple sections. This is stuff I could normally ride smoothly, but I just did not have it. I would get excited to start climbing for about 15 seconds and then my legs would remind me that they were not working either. I fell off my bike for the second time, but this time I was able to dismount and not go down. One time I ended up behind my seat and only clipped in with one foot. I tried to pull myself forward remount over the seat as is done in a normal descent, but that is really hard with only one foot on a pedal. Has anyone ever accomplished that before?

By two hours in, I thought about crying. I was within 5 miles of the finish, but I had no idea what those 5 miles were like. (Note: We pre-rode the first half of the course. In retrospect we should have done the second half.) Chris—who started 30 minutes behind me—came up and pats me on the back on a climb. He asks if I need anything. I tell him no. I spent sometime thinking of my response after he pedaled off and whether it was appropriate and honest. I don’t know what I needed but I did need something. I would never ask him sacrifice his race for me though.

It took me a long, lonely 2 hours and 30 plus minutes. I hated it all. Not because the course was not good, but I was not good. I felt terrible after the race for several hours—light headed, nauseous at times, freezing with the occasional hot flash etc. And I am not menopausal.

The highlights of the weekend were spending time with Chris’ family who came down to watch. I always enjoy spending time with them. I wish I would have had a better race for them to experience though. And then we rode Gooseberry Mesa on Monday with Tim. That was pure delight even though I was still pretty spent. It was good too reinstate my belief in cycling. I am centered again, but am taking some time off.

Chris finished 4th in Semi-Pro.
Chris doing some pre-race prep.
Tex thought he was racing.

Of course there was rain, we were at Brian Head.

Tex and Tim catch some Z's on the way home.

3 comments:

StupidBike said...

16 out of 20 finishers, plus at least you didn't have to hike for 45 minutes. Good job out there. Elevation does weird things to us.

StupidBike said...

oh and tim is sleeping cause he partied way too hard with us Sunday night, yep, partied, yep.

Jared and Miranda said...

awe KC! This makes me sad! I mean, I'm glad you were completely honest about the experience, but I know the feeling of "failing" (even though you didn't fail) at something you're supposed to or at least want to be good at. That's me trying to learn stocks and options... me trying to make bread that rises... me trying to ride a bike period. You get the picture ;-)