Some awesome ladies and I are doing a sprint triathlon next month. I think we signed up for it way back in January, knowing that it would be good motivation for us to stay in shape (or get there in the first place, in my case). I've also been toying around with the idea of 40 things to do before I turn 40 in three years, like this list my friend Erin wrote a while ago. If I had made that list, then participating in some sort of race would have been on it.
Sprint tri: 300 meter swim, 10 mile bike ride, 2 mile run. Sounds hard, but not that hard, right?
Last spring my sporty, in-great-shape friend April came over to go bike riding with me since I hadn't ridden a bike for practical purposes since I was like 11. There was an old bike in our garage that I came to own through someone else's nefarious means, so I figured I was good to go. The saying is "like riding a bike" isn't it?
April has a crazy pimped out bike where her shoes actually clip into the pedals. Have you ever heard of such a thing? She also had gears and a helmet and all of the cool accouterments of a cyclist. I had a rusty, creaky old bike.
And I couldn't ride it to the end of the street. For real. I could not do it.
April and Keaton were fast bike friends, though, so she played sporty mom in my weakness and they had a great time.
Of course I blamed the bike for my inability.
A little later I borrowed a friend's fancy bike (with gears and a helmet and all), and I found that I could ride to the end of the street and then some. Even better, I was having fun! Riding bikes is fun! So fun, in fact, that I bought myself a relatively fancy bike and have been riding regularly. I've ridden 2-4 times a week, anywhere from 5-9 miles.
Basically, I think I'm good. Like ready for the Tour de France good.
Then yesterday happened.
I was looking for a friend to ride with and April volunteered. I hadn't ridden with her since the rusty bike incident because she's a world traveler and has been mostly out of town, so I was kind of excited about actually being able to ride with her instead of wimping out before the end of the street. We met at Lick Creek Park and planned to bike from there to highway 6 and back. She and our friend Britina "love" that route and estimated it to be about 10 miles.
They are crazy.
This seems like an appropriate time to mention the temperature. My arms weren't working when I realized I needed this, so I made Trey screen shot it and email it to me so I could have it for this post.
The screen shot you just looked at is a lie. It was actually eleventy billion degrees and 110% humidity.
About two miles in, I remembered to tell April that I like to take a lot of breaks. I did this in one word increments because I could not catch my breath enough to say more than one word at a time. It went something like this:
"I (suck in air) like (suck in air) to (suck in air) take (suck in air) breaks."
I don't think April heard me because she was talking like we were sitting on a couch or something. I kind of wanted to punch her, but then I remembered that I love her and I didn't.
On we went, stopping every 3 miles or so (it was really every mile and half) for me to catch my breath. During one break, I texted to Trey to tell him I needed an inhaler even though I've never actually taken an inhaler or been diagnosed with anything that requires one. I think I just needed him to know I was suffering. See, I try to act really tough, but I think I might be a baby.
|Notice the weather screen shot sent later.|
Now this seems like an appropriate time for a confession. (Close your ears, Mom.) Sometimes, in my head, I have a potty mouth. I know this is inappropriate and I work very hard to make sure it stays only in my head, but it's there. There were times when I was an English teacher that I would go into a friend's classroom, close the door, and literally say "BAD WORDS!" "PROFANITIES!" and they would know exactly where my brain was.
Back to the story.
First, I wanted to cry. Every time we rounded a corner, there was a hill. I really, really wanted to cry every time I saw a new hill. The whole time I was thinking that until we turned around, I wasn't even half way there. And I wanted to cry.
Finally I told April I didn't think I would make it to the highway and that we should turn around at the top of the hill in front of us. Dangit if we didn't get to the top of that hill and see the stupid highway. I couldn't quit with the goal in view, so on we went. I took a rather long break at the highway while April rode lazily, happily around in circles. I did not commit violence against her, mostly because it seemed like it required too much effort. Then we started back.
That's when my brain started shouting bad words and profanities. They didn't come out of my mouth, though, because I have self control like that. Also, I couldn't breathe so talking was impossible.
The few drops of water I had left were boiling hot. We rode. I rested. We rode. I rested. I actually sat down on the side of the road in the grass and considered just staying there to let the crows pick apart my dry bones. I really, really wanted to puke. I thought I was going to, but I didn't. That's a win, right?
Near the end of the ride, April was telling me a story of one of her travels, and I (after the largest inhale I could manage) rudely interrupted her to say, "Please tell me we're almost there."
Thankfully we were.
I loaded my bike in the truck, and it was at this point that I think even April became concerned. She asked if I was okay to drive myself home and advised me to get some sugar -- like fruit -- ASAP. Turns out it had been more than seven hours since I'd had anything to eat and that seemed like a bit of a problem.
I got home, left all of my stuff in the truck, and collapsed onto the floor in my room under the fan. Then I made Trey screenshot the temperature because I needed backup for this story. When I regained the ability to think, I started checking my GPS app to justify my exhaustion.
This is the part where you act impressed.
My immediate next thought?
I DIDN'T DIE OR PUKE OR PASS OUT! I CAN TOTALLY DO THIS!
Yes, I know I also have to swim and run. Let's be honest, though, I'm probably going to walk the "run" part.
Swimming? I've been working on that, too, but that's a whole other post.