10.13.2008

woo.

wow. i went for a ride on saturday on the mesa trails. i was inspired by the photos of singletrack on bender's flickr site. his photos reminded me how much i love and missed singletrack. the pics ignited my lazy ass to pull the spandex on and strap my helmet and go. the eriksen and i headed out to the mesa. good thing i remembered the ipod as my breathing was super annoying. so loud. anyway, it was so fun to be out. it hurt though. i figured it'd help me get the carbon out for sunday's race or i essentially was blowing my wad.
when i got home i thought i was going to pass out. inspiring indeed.
as the day went on i felt a lot better. so good to have gotten the blood flowing.
sunday came quick. we actually pulled out of the driveway 2 minutes before plan (which for us is essentially a miracle). we arrived in sheboygan in good time as opposed to our usual holy-fuck-i-hope-we-get-there-soon-as-i'm-not-registered...
i had low expectations for myself. i hadn't ridden and the rides i did manage to muster definitely weren't of any intensity. i was actually nervous. i tried not to think about it.
the start came and i actually felt pretty damn good. i was up front and it didn't seem too hard. in fact, it was the best i've ever felt at the start. weird. it didn't last long. i was breathing really really hard and it hurt with every stroke for a bit. i passed a few girls. eventually there were 4 of us women in the lead. i don't know how far back 5th was or where anyone was for that matter. in fact what i just wrote might not even be accurate. i think at some point though it was brenda leading holly's mom, another girl and then me in 4th. i tried to pass with no avail a couple times. when we came up to the equalizer holly's mom and one other girl were gone. brenda was a little bit ahead of me. i ended up catching her on the pavement as we headed into the dirt to start our 2nd lap. i was giving it my all to stay with her. catching the men's traffic slowed us a bit which allowed for some recovery time. brenda kept offering to let me by, but i certainly wasn't ready. eventually i was and went by. i know moriah was right behind us. i think i was in 3rd at this point.
coming to the equalizer i hopped off my bike. usually i can ride at least half or partially up this, but yesterday i had nothing. it was as almost if my legs hit a brick wall. when i dismounted i felt a cramp. fuck, fuck, fuck. i still had one lap to go and i had no electrolytes on me. i knew the bottle i'd be getting would be just water. oh well. i marched on. i fought cramps off the rest of the way. i gingerly pedaled on. moriah passed me on the pavement pushing her big ring. we got to the singletrack and i stayed on her wheel. i hoped she'd make a mistake and she did. i made my move and drilled it.
i of course then was stuck behind a train of 6 guys who hit the brakes for every root or dip. i had to dab a couple times which sent my left calf into cramp mode. i couldn't clip in. i'd just put my foot on the pedal and hope for a bump to put it in. luckily it worked every time. moriah passed me again on that little rock drop heading towards the other side. i was hurting. i tried to stay with her and caught her again just as we dropped into the river singletrack. i stayed right behind her and just hoped she'd tire or i'd get a burst of energy. my thoughts were of the equalizer and how i'd get up it. i passed her in the grass heading up to the famous hill. as soon as i got off my bike both legs seized. quads, calf muscles. full on cramps. no matter what i did, one of my muscles would cramp. my foot even cramped. i had no idea how i was going to get up the hill. painfully no doubt. as i stood there moriah passed me and a bianchi chick passed. damn. that's racing. stupid electrolytes. i gingerly rode to the finish hoping nobody else was right behind me.


jeremey snapped this picture of me hurting and really pissed off. i suppose i should be glad he doesn't have a video of me swearing and complaining.

5th for the day. WAY better than i had imagined. it was a fantastic day. there's just something about sheboygan.

10 comments:

Ben said...

way to race hard, sounds like a great day at the races!

Paolo said...

Congratulations! The Sunday's CX race felt like a WORS race with the 80 degree sun on a bigger than usual hill for a CX race...

mmmmmm..mountain biking

MTB Girl said...

Awesome race. Wish I could have hung with you. Even though I "hate" you, I'm happy you had a spectacular finish. :-) Great job!

BENDER said...

glad I could inspire...

Karisia_Limited said...

Hi, as a racer i thought you and your readers would like to know about the the Mount Kenya 10 to 4 (10thousand feet to 4 thousand feet) http://www.10to4.org/
a race in Kenya to raise money for Mount Kenya and its diverse assembly of animal life. What a great experience. I hope that you and other american riders would consider competing some day. At one place the race was shortly held up by elephants!
One of the greatest bike experiences of my life. cheers,
james christian
karisia walking safaris
http://www.karisia.com

Christine said...

Great Race Rachaela and it was sure nice to see you again!

Julie said...

sounds like a fun weekend. sucks about the cramping but you did awesome anyway!

MTB Vegan said...

great job out there, it was fun watching you race!

Sara said...

Nice job Rachael. Jeremy is totally slacking if he had the opportunity to get video footage of you swearing and complaining and didn't deliver. What, was he too busy handing out beer????

velogrrl said...

Very nice, Rachael. you looked strong and actually cracked a smile or two on the equalizer! I am continually impressed by how well you do even when you don't get a chance to ride during the week!