Monday, June 30, 2008

The Need for Speed

Sunday was a long bike ride on one of my favourite, but more difficult routes. Living in the foothills of the Rockies there is no shortage of places to do hill workouts. This particular route is evidence of that as it is called 9 mile hill. Actually you only climb for 8.6 miles (Garmin) but I guess it is fair to round it up.

The ride up this weekend was a little tougher with a head wind right in my face. This is rather unusual as it is a southern route and our wind almost always comes from the west. Despite the wind, it was beautiful out with temperatures in the low 20's. The planned ride was to go to the top of 9 mile hill, turnaround and then head west to Folding Mountain. In total that would be about 30 miles.

Now the fun thing about climbing 9 mile hill is that you get to descend it, and it is fast! The only thing is once you start sailing down the hill in full aero position at 70 kms / hr you start to think about what you are really doing. Here I am on a couple pounds of carbon fibre with less than an inch of tire on the road peddling like hell to go faster! If I use one side of my brain more than the other on the way down I could put the whole thing in a heap on the road. It would be ugly for sure! Then I read Grellan's blog today about his apprehension surrounding descending and I remember when I had more common sense. I used to be on the brakes the whole way down, but gradually I started to let up a little bit. Then as my bike handling skills improved (in my mind), I wanted to go faster. And now the challenge is to see if I can get it up over 70 kms. The faster the better!

The rest of the ride was pretty good and I ended up with 33 miles in total.

The week ended with over 10 hours of training. One more week at the level and then I will start to taper for Sylvan Lake. I still need to get my Achilles cleared up as on Friday I tried a brick and after an hour on the bike I really had a tough time getting my running stride. The doctor gave me a prescription for a topical anti-inflammatory so we will see if this works.

Happy Canada Day and have a great week!


Tri to Be Funny said...

I am such a wuss on fast descents. The moment I get too fast, I start to panic and feel slightly out of control! Thank Goodness for new brakes, right?

Jamie said...

Good luck with the achilles. Happy Canada Day!