It’s not easy, but I’m learning!

Originally posted June 14th, 2007 – Jamie’s SV Summer Cycle Journal

Well, here we are in week two already! I’ve been told by several people that keeping a journal of my training experience is a good idea, so I’m going to give it a whirl. At the very least, my friends and family will get a kick out of the training stories thus far!

Status update on training to date:

Number of rides: 4
Falls: 2
Days since last fall: 5 (woot!)
Number of bruises: 6
Color of remaining bruises: weird yellowy-brown
Miles traveled: No clue, as my cyclometer came without half its parts. Sigh.
Permanent injuries: 0 (although my left calf begs to differ)

So our first night of hill repeats was yesterday. In some ways, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. You don’t end up riding the entire hill every time, and the hill actually isn’t as steep as I had feared. I breezed through my first ride up, but think that I might have blown out most of my energy way too early. The second loop was a struggle, and the two bugs I swallowed did NOT help. Protein? Maybe. Tasty? Um no. I didn’t get quite as far on the second ride, but was still doing well (especially on the downhill part!).

I was actually feeling pretty good the third time up…right up to the point where I stopped being able to breathe. I just tensed up, started panting, and ended up having to stop and walk for a bit to catch my breath. Coach Devan gave me some good tips about posture and breathing, which I swear I will put to good use on Saturday. šŸ™‚ It took awhile, but I made to the top of the hill – ON the bike. Sorry for making you all wait, but I did appreciate the cheers and kind words!!

Oddly enough, it was the descent that really kicked my tail. I was coasting along, pretty as you please, when all the sudden – BAM! My left calf contracted, and I couldn’t extend it at all. The whole thing just seized. I managed to get off the road and unclipped without falling (miracles never cease), and proceeded to hop around like a deranged chicken, yelping in pain. Coach Don pulled off and I added even more tips to my mental list** of “How Not to Permanently Injure Yourself when Cycling” while trying to stretch the leg back out.

It took a good bit of time, but I did manage to get back on the bike and get down to the starting spot. I really had to baby the leg for that part of the ride – it felt like it was going to seize back up any time I put much pressure on it. Anyway, after all that, I’m looking forward to repeats next week (oddly enough). I’ve learned a LOT already, and want to get back up there and give it another shot!!

Hopefully this calf will stretch back out before our ride this weekend. Thanks again to everyone with your tips and encouragements. See you all Saturday!

** Aforementioned mental list:
ā€¢ Drink more water. Drink more water. Drink MORE water.
ā€¢ Eat more potassium, calcium and other vitamins.
ā€¢ Find energy drinks I don’t hate and start drinking them. Ditto energy foods.
ā€¢ Helmet should not choke you
ā€¢ Shoes should not cut off circulation to your feet
ā€¢ PACE yourself
ā€¢ Did I mention drink more water?


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What do we have here?

An often sarcastic, occasionally humorous journal of my training adventures in preparation for the Livestrong century ride. I took up cycling back in '07 in hopes of meeting new people, and, with the help of Team in Training, making my small positive difference in the world -- and haven't stopped spinning since. Follow along as my Trek road bike and I try and hash out our differences, hopefully with me upright and in the saddle.

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