Even knowing that on Friday I had a mini-bonk, I was still disappointed in how hard the hills murdered my legs. I mentioned it to Mike, who gave me what has become the NYC Velo autoreply to most questions from yours truly:
“You need a road bike.”
Aw, cool, thanks! SUPER HELPFUL!
Apparently, I can churn out 18mph on the flats, though [which is a big deal for me]. That was a little more encouraging, so headed towards Dover on Sunday morning, I contemplated possibly throwing some sprints in there as well. You know, mix it up, keep it interesting.
It seemed like a good plan but I wanted to keep my options open; wuss out if need be, which all signs seemed to point to me doing. My decision was cemented when I realized that the inordinate number of roadies everywhere was due to the weekly Wells Ave Crit. No need for further embarrassment, I told myself, just get the miles in and go home quietly. But of course, this was the weekend of unexpected shit happening to me at every turn, and just when I was pretty sure that this was going to be an easy peasy ride, a blue/green/white kit with a lot of facial hair under the helmet blew past me.
Embrocation IF and full kit. Had to be James. I called out hi, which was an idea that bordered on the idiotic because then I felt obliged to crank it up a lot even if I’m sure James couldn’t care less if he had to go slow or slower to keep pace with me. I did manage to gasp out some conversation, though.
So much for not sprinting/going hard.
Tired and not really feeling it, I turned back after 45 minutes [lame, I know] and decided to just hammer it back home. 90 minutes hard = 2 hours easy, right...? I pushed it through the more flat areas, but still struggled in the climbs. And mid-huffing and puffing, I heard a voice over my left shoulder:
“A freewheel? Really?”
It was RMM [on yet another IF], who I haven’t seen in forever. Of course he caught me just as I was hitting that stretch of road where I was contemplating doing intervals or sprints or laps or whatever stupid idea was floating around in my head, and since he’s a Cat 3, I ended up doing exactly what I was trying to avoid. We ended up talking about the crit, and when he learned I’ve never been, he insisted I go check it out.
I was under the impression that this thing was sort of hilly. Wrong. It’s as flat as I am.
RMM took me around the course on the sidewalk as the B race was going on. It’s a short course consisting of a total of 15 laps, something like 12 miles for Ds and Cs. Navigating the course slowly, RMM pointed out which corners were what and where people usually crashed.
I watched the end of the B race, the start of the A race, got some blurry pictures, then headed home. It was a nice, unexpected twist to the usual ride and even if everyone who is anyone in the Boston cycling scene got to see me in my slightly retarded Lucky Charms jersey, I was feeling good. Even with my previous efforts, I was going at a decent clip, too.
Then I threw my chain.
Campy peanut butter wrench came out of the aforementioned jersey, chain got fixed, and I came home with black stuff all over my hands and arms. Ah, what a Sunday.
[Apparently, I missed a spectacular crash at the end of the A race. Hope everyone is okay!]