So yesterday, I got the biggest, dustiest, slice of humble pie handed to me by Big Ring and his bike; admittedly, I kind of deserved it.
I wanted to show Big Ring how awesome Holly Goquickly was on the hills. And I could have shown him respectfully, but no, that’s not me and my silly competitive way. In the first 5 km of the 60 km ride, on the second giant hill of the day, I was coming up quickly on his heels. In good fun, I shouted out “Come on pokey, what’s the hold up?” The next hill, I got up on my pedals and kicked them into overdrive. As I swept past Big Ring and Lapierre, I shouted out “Eat my dust sucker!!!”
But the thing is, you don’t challenge Big Ring in his element and expect not to be challenged back. For the remainder of the ride I was eating his dust! But I didn’t let it break me, nope. Every time he became but a dot in my peripheral vision, I’d get the voice of Jens Voigt in my head – “Shut up legs! Do what I tell you!” – and I’d speed up until I was back on his wheel again. Coach NZ, you would have been so proud 😀
For our ride, we opted for farmland instead of the city.
While we spent the majority of the day chasing llamas, cows, and breastfeeding foals, climbing tree-lined hills and zooming down into gulleys, it was the final hill of the day that had all my focus. It’s a hill I know well; a hill I spent many of my elementary days walking and cycling to and from my childhood BFF’s house; a hill Big Ring climbed on our wedding day; a hill that nearly killed me the last time I tried riding up it; a hill we call Killer Hill!
But yesterday, it never once occurred to me that I would not conquer this hill. I had confidence. I knew Holly Goquickly’s capabilities. I knew my capabilities. I knew I could get up that hill. And as soon as we turned onto the street of Killer Hill, I started chanting my mantras loud and strong:
I will kill you Killer Hill!
I will conquer you!
I will get to the top!
I will be on my bike!
I will not stop!
YOU WILL NOT BREAK ME!
As we drew closer, I slowed my pace, my fingers twitching at the ready to shift into the lower gear. I started climbing. Straight up, it got tough real fast. I stood on my pedals, my torso curved forward, my head and chest so far over my handlebars, I had no idea how I was not going over them. I started zigzagging, felt like I was on the Alpes D’huez, I was doing it, I was climbing, I was breaking that hill, the negative thoughts were nowhere to be found. Six hundred metres to go, 500, 400… and then, it happened. I had zigzagged too far left, went into the other lane, thought oh crap, probably shouldn’t do that given the winding road and the blind spots, and the fact cars coming the other way would not see me in time, I pulled my handlebars right, a little too right, I was headed straight for the ditch, I couldn’t pull myself back – OH CRUD! Note: I said something far worse and far louder than that when my shaking feet unclipped inches from the ditch and I knew there was no getting back on that bike. I had just 3-400 metres to go. Are you freaking kidding me 😦
With Holly Goquickly under me, I waddled up to my childhood BFF’s house where I climbed back on (cursing the entire way) and completed the hill.
I so wanted this photo to be a victory fist bump in the air photo, but I had to opt for my best Thomas Voeckler tongue out impersonation instead.
- 10:30 a.m. BG before: 6.4
- Temp. basal: none
- Carbs: Zbar 1/2 hour prior, no bolus (18g)
- Distance: 60.37 km
- Time: 2:50:25
- Average speed: 21.3 km/hr
- Fuel (no bolus): @11:15 (4.3) 2 peanut butter and honey quarters and half a tube of Pocket Fuel nut butter. @11:50 (6.4) half a tube of Pocket Fuel nut butter. @12:45 (5.2) 2 peanut butter and honey quarters.
- 3 p.m. BG after: 4.2
Killer Hill, I will one day conquer you!