Weight-loss Challenge Progress

Stage 1 - 4 kg down!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A week of lessons

I guess i shouldn't complain about the speed that Cycling WA updates their website when I myself am reluctant to post an update. I've been told "You can't always blog about the good stuff!"

Sunday had us racing in York and I was to be on my own today as Clare's injury was requiring some R & R - not sure it got it! The race was a mass start - all grades together. The pace was quite high, but I was coping well. There was a steady stream of attacks and I was starting to struggle just before the halfway point. I don't know who was pulling on the front but I was struggling to push hard enough to stay on going downhill! And yes, I've learnt my lesson about using the big chain ring - I was in the hardest gear I could push but someone big and strong must have been on the front of the group. The turn around point was a very tight U-turn. We didn't have any witches hats to go around and I think it was causing chaos. People were unclipping because of the traffic jam and I was 2nd last coming out of the corner. Of course, they raced out of the turn and up a slight hill, I tried to sprint but was put off by my back wheel jumping all over the place. I must have had my weight distributed wrong on the bike because it was fine after that. But i didn't get back to the bunch. Clare was driving as support - she had already picked up davina who pulled out. She motorpaced me which i thought might get me back to the bunch. They were zooming. Sarah was the only girl in front of me and there were 3 behind, I was effectively in no-man's-land. Despite being 2nd, I effectively pulled out of the race at this point and made the most of a motor-pace training session for a good few km's. Apparently I was getting up to speeds of 50km/ hr but I had no idea because I've never been able to figure out what's wrong with my bike computer. My computer spat the dummy the day before and is refusing to tell me anything but the time since. Which is probably a good thing. I may have had a heart attack if I had seen what my heart rate actually was. There was a break in the communication chain and the judges rubbed out Danielle instead of me so during the presentations I had to explain to everyone what happened. Agghh.

Apart from racing, I've also learnt that riding on a wind-trainer can kill you. We have a nice cosy set up in the garage now, complete with tv for our indoor training sessions. Compared to riding on the road the biggest change being on a wind trainer is sweating. I could fill a bucket with the amount of sweat that pours off me. You might think that I would have put 2 and 2 together and drunk a few extra litres of water. I didn't and last week paid the price with some terrible sessions during my recovery from dehydration. Some people may have thought that the biggest difference about riding a wind trainer is that you don't fall off. Well, I assure you - you can.

Speaking of falling off, this morning whilst stirring up the Rider's Choice ride (see below), one of the guys tried his best to bring me down (he may have been a tag-along just like me). Going down the hill at Point Walter is always tricky as the turn is off-camber. So this morning, I'm taking it easy because it's wet when I feel quite a bit of pressure on my back wheel. Clare started yelling and I wondered what was going on because it felt like a bike was locked with mine. It turns out, one of the guys had taken this moment to check on his water bottle (what the?) and touched my back wheel. Thanks to my 'Don't panic, hold your line' attitude I stayed up and he went down. All is well, the wet road surface meant he didn't get any grazes.

And finally, if the train your on is not going fast enough - overtake it. "It's always a race!" If you are out on the road you need to be aware that you are automatically in a race, and overtaking is a sure sign that you've entered. Last year an article was posted on the TriWA forum describing a points system for scoring your efforts. It is hilariously accurate for describing our inability to refrain from showing off. My point is, if you want the group to go faster, don't shout "Hurry up fatties," just overtake them. They won't be able to help themselves and soon enough they will be passing you (this scores you extra points) you can then jump back on the bunch, hopefully, now going at a pace that isn't above your level!

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