Feeling Confident – Sorta

We were planning to spend this weekend on the west side of the State. Given Jim’s commute, three-day weekends are the only times we can visit both my parents & Jim’s mom. We headed over Saturday, but had car trouble. We ended up coming home to spend the weekend by ourselves.

I swam in the river Friday evening. I swam primarily against the current. The 910 credited me with 116 yards. I compared the number of strokes to a pool swim, and credited myself with 500 yards. I like that better.

Prior to our hitting the road Saturday, I did a Brick workout. I combined an interval workout with a short run. Clearly, the three-day lay off following my sigmoidoscopy paid off — I felt pretty good during that workout. I followed it Sunday with a long ride. I have a calendar showing how far I need to ride each week to get ready for the CFF Cycle for Life; this weekend, I should have ridden 45 miles. I’m no where near that, and that fact depresses me a bit. I was supposed to do a lot of bike riding this summer, but I’ve put myself in a position where I’m running and swimming more than I’m biking. 😦

So, despite the previous day’s Brick, I went for a ride. I decided I’d ride out to Benton City & back. The route I’d planned is 37 miles – my longest ride to date has been 23, and I’ve only conquered the hill on Dent Road. The Benton City route involves climbing the ramp from Chamna to Tagaris – a 100′ climb in about a half-mile – and the long, slow climb up Kennedy Road.

Part of my goal to was to work on tired legs. My workouts have been fairly short, and I haven’t done enough hard interval work to really wear out my legs. I got the chance to work tired legs during this bike ride.

Early on, I decided against dropping down into Benton City to save me the hill climb back out. As I was climbing Kennedy, I decided I’m come home via Van Giesen Road instead of taking the route around Red Mountain – this detour saved 2-3 miles and possibly a little bit of elevation gain & loss. More importantly, there’s no commercial development along that route. There’s an old apricot tree along the highway I’ve gorged myself on during a ride – it’s most likely dripping with fruit right now. And if I needed to, I could stop at one of the wineries to refill my water bottle (assuming they’d be open). But I really wanted the shorter route.

As soon as I turned to head back toward home, I was ready to quit. I talked myself out of quitting. I knew that I had to climb a bit at first, but after that it was mostly flat with the exception of the ramp to the interstate bridge over the Columbia River. And so I stuck with it. That two hundred feet of climbing felt like it took forever, but I’m glad I gritted it out.

I considered calling Jim and asking him to meet me at the West Richland library to pick me up and take me home. I stopped for a rest and some shade at an RV “resort” at the west edge of West Richland. It was a much-appreciated break. At about eighty minutes into the ride, I realized I’d neglected the chamois butter and, well, I could tell. The 910 didn’t pause itself while I was stopped, so there’s a fifteen minute lull in the data.

July 3rd Ride

After the break, I still debated back & forth about how far I’d ride. I stopped at Flat Top Park to douse my cycling cap in a water fountain – Bliss! As I was riding through the Alphabet homes in Richland, I decided I wanted a ride home. I called Jim and asked him to meet me at Columbia Point Marina. That only saved me about three & a half miles, but it was worth it to not have to climb to the bridge deck.

It’s three weeks to Race the River. Last week was a recovery week – good timing, too, with that medical issue – so this week is hell. This is the week to really work & stress my muscles. I’m actually looking forward to it.


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