Tuesday, October 10, 2006

False Peak?

Last Friday I raced for the first time in over a month. I was at the track, and glad to be there, but not expecting anything spectacular since (a) I hadn't been training and (b) I had hardly even ridden my bike in over a week. Well, I'll keep this post short, but the news is basically that I think I performed better than I have all year. I even lapped the main field a few times. I was the last one pulled in the miss-and-out because the field got disintegrated by some antsy juniors. I had a decent showing in the 6-lap scratch. And I took all the 4th place points in the 18-lap points race. I felt strong, and Cyndi even complimented me on my tactics in the miss-and-out, then complimented me to Doc after the races (he had to work and just showed up to pick up Ethan). I talked to Jamie for a while afterwards, too - haven't seen her in months. It was nice to chat, plus she commented on my new muscles. : D I feel good, and I'm hoping that I can keep that up for this Friday, as well, since it's the last track race of the season.

I'm looking forward to buying my own track bike, trying out racing at the Superdrome (in Frisco, near Dallas), and maybe even cat-ing up one of these days...

Friday, October 06, 2006

Psyched Out or Psyched Up?

Yesterday was my second day back on my bike after my trip, and I was only able to ride for half an hour due to time constraints. It gets dark so early now, plus I didn't get off of work until late. So I wanted to make the most of the short time I had. I was riding up the closest stoplight-free stretch of road (Space Center Blvd., for those who know it), and crankin' it pretty hard. All of the sudden I noticed another rider behind me. He soon passed me. After he was far enough ahead that I couldn't draft, I picked up speed and just tried to keep pace with him. I don't know how he felt about it, but I felt great! All I needed was someone to pace me, and I no longer thought about how my legs or lungs were feeling -- I thought about my front wheel's distance from his back wheel. It's amazing what a psychological battle it is to tell myself that I really CAN push that much harder for that much longer. But when there's someone else there, I work so much more, without thinking twice about it. It's so easy to psych myself out when it's just me on the road trying to do one more Power Interval or Climbing Repeat. When I've got competition, there's nothing I won't try. So I've found that the difference between being psyched out or psyched up is simply the presence of another individual - some competition, whether they know it or not. (; Just a thought - a realization, if you will. I guess I really am a competitor at heart.

And no wonder the TT doesn't seem like my strong suit... : p

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Back in Houston

Home, sweet home. At least for now. (: I'm back from one of the best trips I've ever taken. I wish I could keep riding for another 3 months (or more)! So much to say, but I won't leave it in the blog. I'm safe and sound and back with my friends. Elisa, my roommate, even made me a welcome back cake, and Bryan put together a little shindig for tonight! I love my friends. I sure did miss 'em.

But I sure do like Seattle. : p