Its a bit like being given a key to ferrari that has no gas. My legs let me down. After nearly an entire week off the bike, I rolled up to the start of the Cherry Blossom stage race in The Dalles with two question marks attached to my hips, and the answer after the first lap was 'No soup for you. Come back one year!'
After getting run into a ditch by a Team O rider who had his head down (I think his tongue was stuck in his front wheel at the top of the big climb) and nearly rode into the trunk of the rider in front of him. Instead, he panicked, swerved, crossed wheels, leaned on me and pushed me into a gravel and mud ditch..You know, standard cat 4 fair. I jumped the bars as the front wheel dipped into the loose gravel, dropped the bike as it got run over and hit the ditch running. I gathered my bottles and chased back on, which in could have been worse, the peloton was only going 5mph the wind was so strong.
What I found out on the front side, with the bitter wind at our backs, was that I couldn't get into my 12. I was spinning, under big efforts, just clinging to the wheel in front of me for dear life, until I gave up...Just before I did, I heard a Ironclad rider ask 'how many cat 3's are in this race?' Just then my legs tightened, ached and twinged, threatening to cramp. 'don't you know you're 39?!' I pulled right and watched the ironclad rider behind me close the door I opened, and the whole lot spun off into the distance. Faaack.
The real insult came in the following interminable thirty or so minutes. As I made the turn for home, surrounded by the shelled carcasses of other similarly unfortunate suckers, the wind was like a slap in the face with a fish. 20 or 30mph- plastering wind! Cramps, defeat, and an energy sapping wind make for some good times. I herded up with a couple of Portland Velo dudes, and a different Ironclad rider and we pace lined it back, rolling over the line together, laughing, shaking our heads...
I didn't show for the TT the next day.
D has got me on the PT plan now. 50lbs in a backpack which I put on three times a day (the real sweetness is that I get to take it to work with me every day and do my exercises in the stairwell) and do heal lifts and heal lifts with a bent knee...until I come back like Steve Austin- sweet haircut, track suit and ready to kick some cold war era ass. Just you wait...I'll get my rematch with those sucka's who already upgraded to 3's. SMACKDOWN commin' - Its a train- and you can't get out of the way.