Sunday, 4 May 2008

I'm fried...

All week I wasn't sure what I was going to write about in this blog entry. After a tough week and an even tougher weekend culminating in todays' session I have decided to tell you about today!

For three weeks Tom & I have tried to get out to ride the Etape Du Dales ( a 110 mile hilly cycling sportif in the Dales.) We were so determined to do it last Sunday that we got up at 5am, drove to Grassington where it starts, got out of the car and then got promptly back in the car!! Yet again the weather put a stop to our ride and instead we had to make do with a 4hr turbo and an 8 mile run. Yesterday (Sat) we finally got a glimpse of Summer and the sun popped into Leeds for the day and we enjoyed a 3hr ride with intervals and then I endured a 14 mile run of hell, with no water (silly me.) Avidly watching the weather for todays forecast showed rain (light) but warmth. Not wanting to waste an hour of riding time by driving to Grassington we decided to just get on our bikes and Tom was going to take me on his new 100 miler (with hills.)

Cycling has definitely not come easy to me (actually it's still a slog) but today I actually enjoyed the whole ride, even the last 56 miles in the rain. It's so easy to write that we covered 106 miles today but it's an epic journey and I will never be able to describe the kind of places we visited, the scenery we saw, the birds we heard singing and the loneliness of some of the places we visited. You can cover so much ground on a bike, it's amazing. The hills were hideous, I can't pretend that even though I got over them that I have a huge sense of achievement over them as they still fill me with dread and anxiety. I envy the cyclists out there who climb like they're not even on a hill, how does that work? We had a great ride, and I'm pleased with how I managed, it appears my days of bimbling along are slowly disappearing. I had my moments, particularily when I was in need of more food but overall I seem to have grasped the concepts of pushing on the bloody pedals!

We left the house at 7am this morning and by 1pm this afternoon I felt like the morning session had happened on another day and we still had over 2hrs of riding left. It's 5.45pm now and I'm absolutely smashed. We dumped the bikes in the hall and did a 2 mile run off it, I tell you if you'd told me I had to go off and run a marathon I'd have crumbled into tiny pieces on the floor. Today was a HARD HARD day but a GREAT day and Tom was amazing keeping me going. I'm in awe of his cycling ability and envious!

Now I've lost the ability to think straight so I apologise for the shoddiness of this post but 106 miles round the hilliest parts of Yorkshire and a 2mile run appear to have scrambled my brain!

H. x

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