After a pre-swim shake-out run and then a 4k Masters practice and work, I joined a group leaving from the LBS that's just two blocks from my apartment. I was seriously afraid to join the "fast group", but also didn't really like the look of the crowd that was headed out for the casual ride. (Wow. That sounds so snobby. But it's true.) So, I went for it with the fast dudes.
A few telling signs that it's still very early in the season: a group of 12 males cyclists and half of them have leg hair. Pace groups broke out quickly. And i was in the lead pack. The faces of many were bright red due to increased HR and blood pressure after about 15 minutes of steady riding.
At one point, we came to an intersection and didn't know which way to go. As we waited for the group leader (and directions), we began to soft pedal toward the direction from which we came. When we spotted them coming, it was time for a U-turn. At which point I unclipped and made a granny-style U-turn. One of the guys kinda smirked/giggled at this move. That's when I stated "I'm not a cyclist for real". To which he replied "Well, you're fooling a lot of the guys tonight."
We then headed up a rather steep hill. I dropped into my small chain ring and started the grind up. My chain slipped and almost sent me head first over my handlebars.
This happened again after I took a pull and we again headed up hill. Small chain ring, chain slipped. This time, several of the guys saw it. Kinda freaked. I popped it back up to the big ring and carried on, got a pull from my buddy to the front again and hammered home.
Back at the LBS, buddy took a look at my chain to see if it was stretched or scratched. And that's when I kinda picked the bike up. And heard a slight rattle from the rear end.
And realized my back wheel wasn't locked in!!!
That could've been bad. And I felt like a total retard. But a very lucky retard. Note to self- change out the trainer spindle when taking the bike off the trainer. This will more likely ensure the wheel is locked on.
So, no, I'm not a cyclist for real. But I've been riding a lot. I rode last night with my buddy, Ackerman. We went to Ault Park, where they hold crits during the summer, to ride intervals.
I'd ridden hard the night before. And I ran an hour that morning. My legs were not fresh. And we had 15 loops to complete. Our loops started on the downhill, flattened and finished on an uphill. We used the top flat for recovery. Each loop took just over two mins.
After about ten, Ackerman told me that "In the spirit of the Holiday..." (really? St. Patrick's Day is an official holiday now?) he had a treat for me after the ride. This was supposed to encite motivation. Knowing him and his hippy ways, I knew this "treat" must entail beer.
We finished the intervals (and my legs cried for joy), did a cool down and as we were packing up our gear, he pulled out a bottle and pops the top of some Irish Ale home brew. He wrapped it in a t-shirt to conceal our wrong-doing. I was taking a swig when I heard "Hey!!"
I immediately looked to the left and saw...Aaron, our swim coach. And I yelled "ohhhh....busted!" At this point, I wasn't sure he knew to what I was referring. I got the feeling he may have thought we were making out or something. He waltzed over and introduced us to his fiance as Ackerman offered him some home brew. He declined, siting something about germaphobia. And then he audibly made the assumption we would not be attending Masters in the morning.
Let's just say I made it to practice. And Aaron took it easy on us. But you wouldn't know it because one of the guys actually split his shorts!
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