Wednesday, November 17, 2004

frustration

normally riding is a release, a chance to blow the stress and frustrations of life away and just enjoy myself for a whille... after a good cross workout at wakefield tuesday night i headed up to gambrill for the night ride tonight...

it started with the drive, an hour and half through georgia avenue, then beltway, then 270 stop and go traffic... only a few minutes to get things togther without holding up the group, but that all went smoothly and we were rolling up the first climb - the worst on the ride, or at least it seems that way since its right out of the parking lot and you have no warm-up beforehand... started strong, but the hard cross practice session left my legs empty and i dropped from the front of the group to the back...

ride the road for a while and then hop onto trail, riding the rocks pretty well... cross over the road at the overlook and drop onto the singletrack... starting to get warmed up and i'm back near the front of the group... looks like i'm going to clean the first technical section, but i'm following another rider and following a line thats a bit different than usual, nearer the outside of the trail and with the trail covered with leaves i ended up going over the bars... hit the ground with my left arm locked and landed on the bars leaving myself with a sore shoulder and what i'm sure will become a pretty nice bruise on my left side... shaken, spooked, back on the bike but somethings not right... my light isn't right, it's there, it's on, but not right... stop, reach up, it's loose... another stop, spend a couple of minutes messing around with the mount (the only thing i don't like about my Lume HID)... catch back up to the group, pissed of, frustrated, and with a rip in my brand new - delivered this afternoon - shorts...

a bit of climbing, stop to wait for another rider who's having a mechanical, more climbing and some nice twisty singletrack... decide to walk the next downhill, it's a tricky one when you can see it, and between my awful riding so far and the lack of light and the leaves covering up a lot of the trails i figure it's better off walked this time... twist and ankle walking down, the same one i twisted this weekend... up a short climb and we split up, considering how my night is going to this point, i pick the slower group... we choose to do the extended loop backwards from th direction that i normally ride it, making a long downhill into a long climb, but giving us a nice twisty downhill at the end...

after a nice downhill we hit the climb, and discover one of the problems with technical climbs in a group... when the person in front of you stops, you stop, on and off the bike all the time up here, some because i get stuck, more because i get stuck behind people... at this point the ride has had no flow, no rythym, it's been on and off the whole ride... too many breaks, too many stops...

actually surprised myself a couple of times on this section, cleaning rocks that i didn't expect... as the climb ended we had a nice twisty ride through the woods, just slightly downhill... across the road to the big rocks and heading back along the ridge to the cars... feeling better now, get to the front and finally get some rythym going... by the end of the ride, fresh of the last downhill, i'm in pain from the crash, but feeling good, riding better...

a final word of advice... if you're riding in a group, and you get stuck, please get off the trail as soon as possible, thanks...

2 comments:

rickyd said...

I don't know what's worse: a bad day on the bike or a good day in the office.

I had to stay late at work so I missed the board meeting, but I got all my stuff done.

Big turnout last night? The conditions seemed good, except for the leaves. Your last piece of advice is very helpful for us lowly ssers.

gmr2048 said...

Oh man, sorry to hear about your crappy ride, Joe. I think we all have rides like that where we're just "off" mentally or technically and nature (or man) just seems out to get you.

-gary