Saturday, April 30, 2011

From 7000ft

Just lying here in the beautiful Rodeway Inn in Silver City, NM in the "assumed position" (on bed, legs up, laptop open) killing time until the Tour of Gila crit this afternoon.

I can definitely say it was probably a good thing to come here before heading down to Colombia for Pan Ams, because I'm finally at the point where I can go up the stairs without sounding like I'm 400lbs and have done no exercise in decades. Still struggling a little to eat without running out of breathe though.

Anyway, backing up - we all managed to get down here safely and sort of timely. Two of the girls were flying overnight to Tucson and after sleeping on bike boxes in Ft. Lauderdale for the night missed their 7 am connection out. Luckily there ended up being a few more flights and it didn't turn into a complete gong show. Out of LAX, Moriah and I almost caused an even more major problem however. I got there with just enough time to get over to the United terminal from the AC one, and Moriah had been hanging out for a few hours. Nearing boarding time, Moriah decided it was time for one last bathroom/Starbucks hit and headed off. All of a sudden all the people at the gate are on the plane and they're saying final call - small plane effect. I drag all our stuff over to the boarding line up and try and explain that we're here - but missing a person. They call a couple times and then tell me well you've got three minutes or the next flight is at 6pm (it's 11am at this point). Finally, "ok you've got one minute are you getting on the plane or not?" "Well I've got her stuff" "Ok you're staying here" Important point: We've got a 4 hour drive to make from Tucson to Silver City after the flight and everyone else was getting in between 10am and noon. Finally, at that point Moriah's heard her name and comes running through and the nice lady at boarding manages to convince the not-so-nice lady to let us on the plane. Oops.

But we all made it up to the bustling metropolis of Silver City. Maybe more like the settlement. You end up past the city limits signs and there isn't even cell service - forget any hopes of 3G.

Tuesday night I cranked out my last exam -physiology and fed-exed it back up north. And faced the Mogollon Road Race Wednesday. Bit of a weird day all round. Moriah just about missed the start...well in fact she did but got back on... in a last minute portapotty trip. Then suuuuuppper slow preettty much alll day. I think everyone was feeling the effects of the altitude - or the trying to mitigate the effects of altitude with excessive drinking - and there were several en mass pee stops. not so usual in the girls peloton as it's a little more complicated process...

Hit the final 10k climb and things seriously ramped up. I made the front split of 7 on the first section, it came back together a bit, made the front split of 6 again. Held it for a short period, feeling like it was going to be hard but ok. And then it was not ok, and I started a serious fall backwards. Verrrry long last 2 miles. Got passed by about 14 girls I think to roll in 21st. Even the last 500m felt like eternity. These days happen though. Can't say 10k climbs at altitude are especially my forte.

Thursday's road race didn't pan out perfectly either. A few splits on the early QOM's but things pretty much came back together. One fun, fast descent that splintered the pack too - few people off the road and one master had apparently launched himself off the side before we came through. The ambulance was there and a bunch of people in the ditch when I went by. Maybe time for a little more breaking. Anyway, kind of mangled the end of the race. Little worried about how my legs felt from the day before, got way too caught up thinking and just didn't ride nearly aggressively enough.


Yesterday, was TT day and the chance to make all that back up. After flipping back and forth between riding the disc or just deep dish rear (due to wind gusts hitting 50mph) I decided I'd better just suck it up and go full bore. It was a pretty fun TT course. About a 4 mil climb heading out and the some good rollers to the turn around. It was a bit of a longer TT for us girls at 27k but managed to find a good rhythm and roll through. Apparently there were a few points where they were gritting their teeth in the car while I was descending and getting blown so hard my bike was almost at a 45 degree angle. Had a good death grip on the aerobars though and managed to keep it together. The cacti at the side of the road were good motivation for that. The finish was crazy fast with the downhill combined with a wicked tail wind. Spun out the 55x11. Although spun out might be a relative word for me as I am not a spinner by any means.

Gained enough time to move into the U26 jersey and with 11th in the TT moved up to 14th in GC. And managed to miss podium. Which resulted in quite a few apologies. And a good scolding. Whoooops.

Time for to start getting prepped up for the crit this after. Wind doesn't seem toooo crazy - fingers crossed - and should be a fun rolling course. Gotta try and hang on to the jersey so I can actually make it to podium....

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