Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Back on Track

WOO HOO! My second 7.1 mile bike time trial (TT) was yesterday and it's clear that I'm back on track.

For any new readers, I had a most unpleasant meeting with the asphalt about month ago and had to severely cut back my training, mainly due to injured ribs.

Now the only physical remnant of the incident is still a noticeable bump on my leg, which husband Dave thinks is a deep muscle bruise that can take months to heal. It only really bothers me when I try to pull on/off a wetsuit over it or use that leg as a bumper -- BAH!

So I turn on my bike computer at the TT for the first time in weeks. I hadn't wanted to know how slow I was going when I was recovering but now felt ready to see some numbers. There was about a 12 16 mph wind (per Weather Underground) that was gonna make us fly on the outward leg but make us suffer on the way back. My kind of race, actually.

And thanks to recent time change, it was still light out, a huge difference to me from my first bike TT back in January. The women also got to go first so no long cooling off period after my warm-up. When I lined up, the woman in front of me says, "Oh no, not her, she's fast." I remembered her from the last TT but my only real goal for this race was to stay upright. I hadn't done much fast riding at all in the past month and had no idea what the bike computer would be telling me.

But this time we didn't have anyone holding us up at the start and, of course, getting my shoe clicked into the pedal under pressure has always been somewhat of a struggle. I finally manage to do so after like a bazillion tries (really, about 5) and am now thoroughly pissed because I couldn't take advantage of the little downhill we start off on.

In the second mile I see my speedo reading 25 mph but think I can't hold it (or could I?) so I back off to 23-24mph. Again, this is with the wind helping.

Near the turnaround, I finally catch the woman who'd started 30 seconds in front of me and she gives me a nice cheer (thanks Roberta!). But, I slow way down making the U-turn, still afraid my bike will slide from under me as it did before. Of course, there's the photographer as I'm going like 10 mph ...

Headed back home and into the wind, I start off only around 18.5 mph but know it's gonna be "fun" for a while so I ignore the bike computer and just try to stay strong. A couple guys pass me but I start gaining on some other folks: one other woman, a young girl, and a couple guys who were just out there riding, not racing.

By the last mile or so I'm holding 20+mph, just barely. Legs and lungs are burning and I'm now cursing the wind and the lactate threshold treadmill test I took the day before. It'll be over soon I keep telling myself. It'll be over soon. It'll be over soon ...

I focus on trying to catch one more guy in the final hundred yards. Just before the finish, he turns his head around, sees me, starts going faster but then goes around it. As I realize he's not racing either, I roll across the timing wires and let go of the pain of racing. Sweeeet!

My race time: 19:25.6, 21.93 mph
Dave's race time: 18:06.8, 23.54 mph

My time is actually 7 seconds slower than last TT but a 0.76 mph faster average speed so they must have either lengthened the course a bit or computed the speed differently. Whatever, the wind was much tougher this time and it's the first race since my crash so I am happy with my performance. Dave's time, though, is a huge improvement, largely because he didn't miss the turnaround this time :-P

Then after the race, I put on my running shoes to go put Vote-for-Shirley flyers on all the parked cars. Dave joins me and helps when he's done with his race. Not a whole lot of folks at this TT but I talked to some in person who said they were members of other local clubs/groups and would pass my name on to their members. Thank you!!!

Added: Had my first pain-free swim last weekend and will be back to swimming more after my marathon on Sunday!

16 comments:

Wendy said...

Well done! Both of you!

DaveP said...

I'm trying to get her to get a set of race wheels like the HED 3's. Any support?

Iron Eric said...

Very cool! You did a fine job!

Jade Lady said...

Great job on the time trial! You're definitely back on your saddle!

Petraruns said...

Wow! What a great report - and I guess it totally proves your easy recovery strategy right as well? So much to learn from you Shirley with the pearls of wisdom! Big WOOT to Dave as well - nice time! And a marathon on Sunday? You are incredible!

runninggeezer262 said...

Way to come back from your injury. Best wishes for a great run on Sunday. You continue to inspire!

Shirley said...

Thanks Everyone! I must admit that I think I tried to get back into swimming too soon and that may have set me back some. Live and learn ...

Maddy said...

Nice job at the TT! Send my congrats to Dave also!

Good Luck on Sunday. I will be (virtually) chering for you!

Susan said...

TT, swim, marathon -- BOOM! Nothing keeps Shirley down! I am very, very excited for you, my friend! I can't wait to hear more.

P.S. Good idea putting fliers on the cars.

Tri to Be Funny said...

great times!!

akshaye said...

Great TT! I am glad you're back on the bike. Good luck with NJ in case I dont message you before then!

Smithposts said...

Congrats on the time trial, nice to be remembered as fast! Good luck this weekend on the marathon.

peter said...

Nice ride! I'm glad you're back to racing! Good going for Dave too.

Brent Buckner said...

On track!

All the best for your marathon....

Bigun said...

nice TT! We have a series here that starts in May usually...looking forward to it.

PLANET3RRY said...

you're not the only one back on track... doesn't it feel GREAT!!!