Monday, August 12, 2013

Great Day at Hodge's Dam

Yes, it's been awhile since I've written on the Blog. Life got away from me between work, family, riding bikes and racing. To be honest, the past couple of weeks have been kind of tough but we have muddled through, a little bruised but not broken. May have felt like it but no just deep bruising! So, onward and upward we go!

So, yesterday was the Root 66 race at Hodge's Dam. Perfect weather, we couldn't have asked for any better! We had a chance to pre-ride the course on Saturday. I'm glad we did, there were a few spots that it was helpful already knowing the line I wanted to take. We didn't start till 2 pm so there wasn't that big push to rush out of the house in the morning, I like that!

David, Kelly and Eddie after the race
Our friend David Smith was driving up from NJ to race also to race. By the way, he just competed in the Lake Placid Ironman 2 weeks ago!! All of us had only met through the Spinervals FB page but have been supporting each other over the past year with training. So much fun to actually meet David in person! We're already planning the next race/ride. Next one in NJ! What an awesome group we have for support! Thank you Spinervals!

Okay, onto the race. As I said, perfect weather and we didn't start till 2 pm. We get there at 11 am, get the tent set up, David arrives, we all chat. Go get our numbers, I catch up with different people, watch the Cat 1's and Pro's start, cheer a bit then head back up to get changed. Do my warm up and feel pretty good. My goal for this race, not blow up my heart rate out of the gate, don't crash, and hopefully no mechanicals. What more can one ask for?

The start, I held back, let everyone else go out in front. It's a bit of a ride on a cart road to start out on and plenty of places to pass if I wanted too. HR stays in the 140's. Follow along, riders start to fade off, pass one by one. I know there's still a bunch of women out in front of me. We're not even half way through the first lap. Just following Kim. We come up to the rock gardens I can see the group, just ride steady. First hill, too many people off the bikes, must run it, yuck. Go over the first bridge, pass people. I'm feeling good! Up and over the climbs without difficulty!! Make it up the second to last climb, nasty little thing with roots and very steep! Yeah, I cheer myself on. I really do say out loud, "Good Job!". I know, I'm a goof ball.

I don't ever see Rebecca (she came in first about 2 1/2 minutes in front of me) but I do keep in contact with Pam and Jessica! Our second lap (I think it was that one) was so cool! The three of us were riding right together ripping up the trail through the downhills and turns! OMG, yelling out yahoo like a bunch of girls! What a flipping blast! I cheer myself on again for making the climb and we're onto the 3 third lap, I go to take my water bottle off the stand and drop it. Unclip to pick it up and start cramping up! Jessica pulls in front of me, darn it! Not sure where Pam is but get back on the bike and just start pedaling. Ouch, I keep telling myself your okay, just keep going.

Thank you Tony Flores for the socks!
I still see Jessica, through the rock gardens and up the first short climb onto the second climb I have to dismount and guess what happens? Cramps, hamstrings and quads. Eddie's right there yelling at me to get going. I get back on the bike, Jessica's gone. All I can do is just pedal and try to work through the cramps, finally settle in. Get my rhythm back, steady cadence and I actually make it up the climb the third time, now I'm really cheering myself on!! I know I won't catch Jessica but I can just push as hard as I can the last part of the course, I hit a groove turning over the pedals taking good lines and moving with the bike!

I love that feeling of when I can just ride picking the lines, feeling the flow of the trails and the bike taking the corners, just that feeling of joy!

Me 3rd, Rebecca 1st, Jessica 2nd
Well, I ended up third! Had a great day with great friends. Got to cheer each other on and do something we love to do!! Thank you all! Until Landmine!!

After the race we sat around with David made some coffee in the French Press and talked. Of course I got hungry and we headed up to Worcester and stopped at Ciao Bella's for dinner and desert.
Red Velvet cake from Ciao Bella's

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