Thursday, March 18, 2010

I'm not a cyclist for real

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!


The Sean said...

Glad you made it out unharmed:) Those guys must've thought you were tough, imagine if you had put your bike together before hand:)

Mike Russell said...

There is nothing better than humility in excellence -- great work.

Sean in DC said...

oh sh*t. I've still got my trainer spindle in my back wheel too.

zencycle said...

Amanda said... "So, no, I'm not a cyclist for real"

Yeah, you are.

Colleen said...

You are totally a ccylist for real, even if your wheel wasn't locked in! Glad you chose to go with the fast group - you belong there!

Christi said...

There are some many great stories in this one blog. Real cyclists, home brew and split shorts. It doesn't get any better than that!

misszippy said...

Close call on the wheel! Glad you came out of it ok. And good for you for hanging w/ the speedy guys.

RockStarTri said...

In case you haven't figured it out yet, you are real. Skewer and turnaround challenged, yes, but real.

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

Nice job on the ride and hangin' with the fast guys! I would have done the granny u-turn too...ha ha!

Big Daddy Diesel said...

"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"

Well I am not even close to fast, I fall into the latter. If you still wanna ride sometime, in the middle, or even in Cinci (I like it down there), I am game

Red Bike said...

I'm not a real cyclist either but I pretend to be every now and then just so that I can get away with eating a lot of cake :)

I think we've all had that 'Oh heck my quick release is undone' while riding.

Kim said...

is it bad that i dont even know what youre talking about? back wheel locked in? hm. i should really know what that means.