13m: Some good fun

by Arlyn on December 15, 2008

Completely unsatisfactory! The rain-mongers predict it will rain all week! I’m just starting the second week of my first Build period and I cannot sit, sit, sit, sit on cold, cold wet days. I do not like it, not one little bit.

My backyard
 Ha! But I know some games I can play. I know it is wet, and the sun is not sunny, but I can have lots of good fun that is funny. (Been reading a lot of Dr. Seuss to the kids lately)

What do I have all this cold weather gear for, if not to ride in the rain? And (this is the kicker), I’m only doing hill repeats today. I could do laps on Pomerado Road in the rain. Climbing in the rain is probably really fun. Descending probably sucks, but if I ride the brakes, it can’t be too bad, right? We’re just talking one short hour of hill repeats.

And, that’s how I found myself on my bike, in the rain, headed down Pomerado Rd wearing bibs, undershirt, long-sleeve jersey, arm warmers, leg warmers, full-fingered gloves, beanie and full rain jacket. I ended up really missing shoe covers, btw. At first, my brain kept going, “Hey, we’re getting wet!” until I finally got it to accept that wet was the point.

Descending turns out to be trickier than I imagined. My brakes are basically worthless in the rain. I have to stay on them just to keep my speed below 25mph. It’s also really hard to see with the rain splattering into my eyes. I try some yellow tinted sunglasses, but that’s worse, the rain makes them useless. There are no fenders on my bike so the rooster tail thrown up by my front wheel happens to hit me right in the face. By the time I get to the bottom I’m thoroughly chilled and my hands ache from gripping the brakes. Otherwise, I’m ready to climb.

I turn around and head back up the hill. I have about a mile of 7-8% grade to climb. My heart rate comes up, the legs make their usual noises. It’s kind of fun really. I start to imagine what all the drivers are thinking. I’m so much cooler than them. The rain is coming down really hard, but it doesn’t matter. The water is a few inches deep in some places and my wheel sluices it up, right into my shoe. Perfect.

My wet bike!
My legs are not feeling 100% after the drubbing I took Saturday. I realize I should have recovered for one more day, but can’t give up now. This is just too epic. My hand feels heavy so I hold it out and squeeze, wringing at least a cup of water from my glove. That’s so cool. I’m all steamy by the time I get to the top. I wait for the lights to change and descend back down for four more laps.

When I get home, the wife asks me if I’m crazy. Yeah, I guess I am.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

will December 16, 2008 at 10:25 am

Would you, could you on a bike? Would you, could on a trike? Dr Suess! nice

Well done – crazy like a fox!

You are right, climbng is fun in awful weather – whereas descending is an adventure. Too bad it wasn’t a little colder ….. snow is fun too. ;)

Arlyn Asch December 16, 2008 at 10:30 am

@will: Nice, I love green eggs and ham.

Donald December 17, 2008 at 6:26 am

It looks like the rain does not stay mainly in the plain in Spain.

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