Saturday, December 13, 2008

And the First Shall be Last

RESTON, VA


Some days you have it, some days you don't. Today I didn't.


It was cold but I wanted to ride. It's easier if you commit to meeting people so I called Adam Lewandowski at The Bike Lane last night to see if they would be riding in the morning. He said they would. It seems silly to drive 45 minutes to join a group ride but that's what I did. I pulled in just as they were departing and asked if they would wait for me. They did. There were eight of them.


It was 28 degrees (minus 3 C) and I quickly put on my shoes, grabbed my bike, and rolled up with them. I caught them outside the mini-skating rink at the Reston Town Center where two teams of 8-9 year olds were playing ice hockey. Cute.


We rolled out and kept a good pace. Think about the guys that want to go riding when it's below freezing. There aren't too many recreational types here. I overheard one guy talking about his personal cycling coach.


Still, we kept together for most of the ride but on one fairly long climb the pack pulled ahead of me by 50-100 meters and I couldn't close the gap. I could catch them at the traffic lights but there were two places on the course of 30 miles (48 km) where my legs just weren't keeping up. Disheartening.


It dawned on me that the night before around 9:00 p.m. that I did 40 minutes on the stepper machine. I mentioned that to Adam and he opined that would kill my legs for sure. I simply had no recovery at 9:00 a.m. in the cold. Whatever it was, I was the slow poke today.


It doesn't usually happen but we've all had those days -- at least all of us who aren't doping have had those days. It was cold. It was still fun, but a little disheartening.

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