Sunday, June 27, 2010

Nick's Big Day Out

Wow...   a lot happened today...   I'm exhausted!  But if I don't write this now its not going to get written!

Up at 530am and rushed around like a crazy fool and managed to stuff all kinds of gear, clothes, food and my bike in the car and get out the door by 6 when I headed off to Goddard State Park to go and watch the Oh My Goddard Sprint Triathlon being held today.  I went as I wanted to show support for my fellow club members as well as to go and watch a triathlon so I'll know what I'm walking into in two weeks.  I'll definitely be a little more calm now that I know a little bit more about what to expect.

When I arrived I managed to spot CJ and Luis and get a good seat to watch the first wave of the swim start go off.  I was pleased to see that it only looked like about 15-20 people per wave which wasn't so intimidating.  The swim course also didn't look too bad.  Although it did seem a little longer than what CJ and I swam yesterday.  I watched the waves all go off and then watched the first swimmers go through transition as I waited for CJ and Luis to exit the water.  I caught a shot of each of them running by and heading into T1 and then headed out to watch the bike course for a bit.  It was fun to watch the fast men and women rushing by on the bike course.  What a great sound as they go flying by. 

I feel a lot better having watched a small local race to get a feel for what those are like and I'm now looking forward to my first race in a couple of weeks.  I'm a bit jealous that some of my friends knocked their first tri out of the way today whereas I still have a couple weeks to go.  But I'm glad I've waited till the right time.  Speaking of my first...   I'm still deciding between the olympic and the sprint distance races.  Either of which I can knock the bike and run off no sweat, but the swim is where I'm a bit concerned, especially as the first half of it is into a moving current that means no resting or you drift backwards.  But I'll make that decision this week after I see how my swim workouts go.

Heres a shot first of CJ, and then of Luis heading to T1
And here's a shot of everyone getting the swim course instructions Pre-Race

I left the Tri at 8:30 and rushed north to run a couple of errands and then meet up with Nancy.  After Luis didn't show at the afternoon swim workout yesterday I had a strong hunch that he was going to have to bail out of our afternoon ride plans on Sunday, especially as he had his first tri that morning.  Right around that same time I got an email from Nancy about her plans changing as well and a plan came together for a long sunday ride together. 

So we met up and loaded up the bikes on the car and headed off to Westport, MA.  We followed one of the Narragansett Bay Wheelmen's 50 mile rides out there.  What a great place to ride!  It was beautifull out there with the exception of the heavy fog at the beaches.  In fact when we rode past the beach you could barely even see the ocean it was so foggy.  Fortunately we didn't stay in the fog bank too long which was good as visibility was really bad which I'm sure meant drivers wouldn't see us until pretty late too. 

The weather otherwise was pretty hot and humid for a lot of the ride although there were some nice breezes along the way.  Nancy and I have done a few long rides together and I always enjoy them as we do a nice mix of paces along the way, some chit chat, and some nice long moments of serious effort too.  So its a well balanced ride.  Somewhere around mile 40 we stopped at this little general store.  It was a seriously odd place.  There is one little fridge in it though that had a bunch of cold drinks in it that I was very happy to see so we were able to restock on fluids.  Other than that it seemed to be filled with lots of musty funky smelling oddities. After a brief rest we headed off again.  Which is right around the time Nancy said something about her legs being sore.  Which I thought to myself...   oh thats good, maybe we can take it easy pace wise for a bit as I'm kind of starting to tire out a bit.  Apparently this soreness only lasted about 60 seconds and then we picked up the pace.  Personally my soreness lasted about five minutes so it was all I could do to hold her wheel until I loosened up again.  And then a chunk of time after that apparently I was feeling much better and I took a turn pulling.  Fortunately for me that time also coincided with the longest descent of the day.  Which wasn't that steep, but it was good and long so that was nice.  At this point we were only about 3-5 miles away from the car and Nancy grabbled the lead and did her best Mark Cavendish impression almost leaving me in the dust.  This time I was really struggling to hold her wheel and I slipped back a good three feet before I managed to fight my way back.  But it made for a fun end to a great ride.  In the end we averaged 17.8mph which was perfect considering the mix of relaxed and hard efforts during our ride, and it will also leave us both fresh to slaughter the PB Time Trial on Tuesday night where we're both hoping to set new PRs which is going to be tough for me after such a strong outing the other day.  I'm just hoping for a 20mph average over my previous best 19.5 average.

Definitely a great ride today followed by a nice visit to the very grey and foggy Horsneck Beach to lay around and recover, and a nice dinner on the way home to end the day with.  Great day!  Sadly the end to this day though means that tomorrow reality must once again set in and I have to bury myself in work.  Ugh.  I'm not looking forward to it.  But rather than dwell on it I'll instead share this one last image that makes me smile just looking at it.  Today was one of those days where I think Rhode Island heard me talking about wanting to move again someday and how much more beautifull riding out west was, and how much I enjoy being around other athletes.  So in order to convince me to stay it arranged for good company, a great ride through a beautifull area, and some relaxing time at the beach.  So what is this a picture of?  a beach?  a rolling landscape?  wildlife? two very hot, humid, and sweaty riders?

No its much more simple than that.  Its just two bikes racked on top of my car at the end of a great ride on a great day with great company.  And as far as I'm concerned Sunday's don't get much better than that.

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