Monday, February 28, 2011

Cold day and big ride

It was chilly yesterday! Clear, blue skies but cold. I started the day by attempting to swim in Lake Natoma with my friend who is training for the Alcatraz swim. The water was 46 degrees. I wore a wetsuit but it just wasn't enough. Treaded water and that was about it. Every time I put my face in, I immediately got a horrible brain freeze/ice cream headache. Going to get a neoprene cap and booties. Hopefully that will help. On the positive side, swimming in this hypothermia water will make CdA feels super nice. CdA is usually in the low 60s in June. Being that cold pretty much set the tone for the rest of the day.

After the "swim," I sat in the car with the heater on to dry off and warm up. I wore my DeSoto 400 mile shorts and a tri top under my wetsuit and planned on biking with them to try out the plan for CdA, which is to wear one outfit the entire day. The shorts and top dried quickly, so I was just a little damp when I set out on my bike ride. Ooooh weee! It was chilly out there!

The ride started out on the bike trail, which is kind of annoying with lots of curves and joggers who don't understand going against traffic, but then I wound up on a major road for a bit. This section of the ride from Folsom to Auburn sucks for a while. Lots of rednecks in lifted trucks with huge tires and no bike lane. Unpleasant. It calms down a bit after about 10 miles and I was able to enjoy looking at all of the huge horse estates. I was still unsure which route I wanted to take. Two options: ride the loop from Folsom to Auburn to Cool and back. Lots of climbing, really tough ride; or ride from Folsom to Auburn and back the way I came. Still a bit of climbing but more smelly cars. By the time I got to Auburn I had decided on the loop.

Auburn is touted for having the world's toughest HIM. And man, is it hilly! Right after getting into town, you have to descend a monster hill with lots of curves and no bike lane. Not fun. Lots of asshole drivers that get right on your ass and honk. Seriously? Hey, jackass, do that again and I'll pull you from your car and beat your ass! You think I can't catch you? Just watch! What? You're a huge man and I'm a small chick? Then it will be even more embarrassing for you when I kick your redneck ass! That exchange plays in my head on repeat.

After the monster descent down to the American River, you have to begin a monster climb. Over two miles, curvy. Ouch! My legs were shaking at the top. A couple of miles later, I saw 4 young deer jumping and running along the side of the road. So awesome! This part of the country is amazingly beautiful and this ride kicks ass. It goes around Folsom Lake and there are lots of gorgeous trees and animals. Too bad it's crazy hard! Okay, I guess I like that part too :)

The rest of the ride is hilly. Lots of up and downs. Just under 5000 feet of climbing in 66.57 miles. Unfortunately, it was sooo cold and windy. I felt pretty cranky by the end. Desperate to be done. I made lists of all the drivers I hated as I rode: anyone on a loud motorcycle, anyone who honks, any of the pervs who yell crap, anyone with a huge diesel truck pulling a trailer of horses, farm equipment or water sporting equipment (do they not realize that the trailer is wider than the truck? Couple of near side swipes. Scary) and, especially, the asshole who blew the air horn at me around mile 60.

By the time I finished, I was frozen. I had bugs, snot and dried tears on my face, claws for hands. In fact, I was so tired when I finished that I drove most of the way home before realizing that I still had my helmet on.

Trying to make today a rest day. We'll see.

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