Monday, August 16, 2010

An athlete?

We did it! Katie and I completed our first ever Covered Bridge Metric Century bike ride in Lancaster, PA. The ride included three possible distances for us to choose from; 25k (17 miles), 50K (31 miles) or a 100K (62 miles). It took us 5 hours to complete it and it rained for probably the last 10 miles, I mean, really rained, but we finished the 50K; 32 miles (the route ended up being 32 miles, instead of 31)… This was quite an accomplishment for both of us, as the most either one of us has over done before was 20 miles.

We were greeted at the finish line by Katie’s mom and two little girls that joined us for the weekend. Also joining us were two other lady riders, who completed the 100k; that’s 62 miles. Should I mention that they completed it in less time than it took us to complete the 50K? Nah….haha. I have to admit I find that a bit embarrassing, but at the same time, I’m still amazed that I did it at all!

I’d like to say that I lost a couple of pounds riding a bike for 5 hours, but not so. I was so hungry FROM riding a bike for 5 hours that I think I consumed enough food to make up for every calorie burned during the ride. The sugar cookies, pretzel sticks and turkey hill ice cream they provided after the ride were damn good and well earned!

The volunteers working the water/snack stops were friendly and helpful. The riders were supportive and friendly. If they found you resting along the side of the rode, they’d ask if you were OK as they whizzed by. I assume if you were to say no, they’d send some help but not sure I believe they would have actually stopped. There was the sac wagon that cruised by every once in a while making sure that we were all safe and feeling well.

It was pretty clear from the beginning that I didn’t really fit in with these riders. First off, I wasn’t wearing the right clothes. I had on my ¾ length exercise pants that are really yoga pants apparently and a yoga tank top, belonging to another exercise outfit of mine. Apparently I find yoga gear to be very comfortable to wear when running. All the other riders had their spandex shorts and spandex shirts with cute little pockets on the back to hold stuff. I’ve decided while I can do without the spandex, I need one of these shirts!

Not only were my clothes all wrong, but apparently my bike was too. I believe it was at the first rest stop when a rider noticed that I was sporting a mountain bike and I was then told that I was “ambitious”. I am pretty certain it was a nice way of saying “stupid”. Most riders had what I am told is called a “road bike”. It’s a much thinner, lighter bike; the frame is smaller and the tires are probably half as thick as mine. However, considering the rainy weather, I’d like to think I had the advantage of having the safer tires. *smile*

I am trying to convince Katie that next year, we will be ready to ride the 100k – 62 miles. Guess I will be adding that on to my goals for 2011, right along side my goal to run a full marathon.
Next up, is the half-marathon scheduled for October 16th, 2010. I began my 12 week training for it this past Tuesday. Unfortunately, I wasn’t thinking clearly and miscalculated just how much time I had to train. This means that it will actually be only 9 weeks instead of 12. Considering all the runs I missed and the multiple injuries I endured, including the concussion, while training for the 10 miler in June, I can’t say that I’m all that concerned. I say lets get it on!

There are also a few smaller races before then. There is the Race for the Cure (5k) on October 3rd I’ll be participating in. I also received a notification in the mail about a “Run to Remember – 5k” on 09/11/2010 to begin at 8:46 am. Having been living in NY and working at Morgan Stanley when the Twin Towers went down, I found myself registering for this run as well.

During a conversation this week I mentioned that because I had plans after work, I had to be up at 6 am to run my 4 miles on Tuesday. It was then said that I didn’t “have” to but that I “chose” to. I replied with, “No, if I want to run a half marathon, I HAVE to run. If I want to stay healthy and keep the weight off, I HAVE to run”. This isn’t a choice. It’s something I HAVE to do to, to maintain my health, both mentally and physically.

So, here I am; having run a 10 mile race, going to run a half marathon in less then 9 weeks, having biked 32 miles along with having run various 5k’s, even a 10k and doing some hiking. Who’d have ever thought it? Certainly, not me.

Within the last week I’ve had three separate people call me an athlete. This word seems foreign to me and all I think is, really? You think I’m an athlete? Nah….

I suppose in the back of my head I secretly want to complete a triathlon – maybe then I’d consider myself an athlete. In fact, I’d be a tri-athlete, haha. But that thought also terrifies me at the same time and I think might just be a goal for 2012.

Right now, I am just someone who is trying to be healthy and fit. Does that make me an athlete? Nah….but it’s nice to think about. *smile*

1 comment:

  1. I truly believe that anyone can be a sprint distance triathlete so long as you choose the right 1st race and you have the persistance (which you obviously proved with 5 hours of biking). I think that you might be ready for it sooner than you think because even if you are slow, you will be done in half that time!