Friday, April 25, 2014

Successfully Dropped

 After spending the day taking a group of kids from Jackson County Schools on a mountain bike ride, I got home, switched bikes and headed over to Liberty for the Thursday evening ride.  A good crew showed up and about 25 of us rolled out together.  The pace was moderate from the start but gradually picked up. 

Blue skies and headwinds, temps close to 70.  Awesome weather, the greenery bright, flowers popping out all over the place. 

The ride is a bit of a blur now, but I did my best to hang on.  The group split up along Pennsylvania as Taylor up the pace.  The A and B groups split up at this point.  I'm not sure what happened behind me, but I got in with 3 other guys and we hammered away,  pulling for a few seconds each and making some headway. 
The final sprint
 Through N Mills and over to Fletcher, I was surprised to still be hanging on.  And I felt ok.  I was tired, and legs were burning, but I just kept focusing on my body position and pedal stroke.  And relaxing,  a person is  much more efficient when relaxed.

It is the little kickers on Baldwin that usually get me, and today they got me good.  I finally got dropped and lost sight of the group.  But, when I rounded the turn onto Hendersonville Rd, I could see them in the distance. 

It was on.  I knew there was a good chance that they would be caught by a red light,  it happened every time and today the odds were in my favor.  The fist time they got caught, I could see the distance separating us start to dwindle.   I found a gear that I could sustain, and pedaled as hard as I could.  Legs burning, lungs begging for more air, I cruised.  I have no idea what my speed was, but the group was definitely not lounging back.  They hung out there about 1/2 mile up the road.  If I had one other person with me, we would be able to latch on.

Then they got caught by another red light and I was able to make one final push and re-join just as the light turned green again.  

Success!   That might never happen again, or it might, it will be different, and challenging for sure. 

Climbing back over the ridge to head home I got to enjoy the fresh, cool mountain air and see the sun setting to my side.  This is a part of the ride that I really enjoy.  Just spinning and soaking in the stillness of the evening. 

Can't wait til next week!

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