Ok, so today went well! Yay! Last long ride is in the books. Scott repeats my Yay, and raises me another YAY...
I rode with my trusty training partners, Mike and Sandy, who will also be racing in Kona. They've been riding crazy long all summer so today their plan was to go just 90. (I said 'just 90', like 90 isn't long. HA!) Anyway, we cruised together and held a nice steady pace, with a few planned harder efforts here and there. I felt really strong. Surprisingly strong. Like, my legs didn't hurt at all. How is that even possible?
I sprung an extra 15 minute hard interval on Mike and Sandy at about mile 75. They were game. We picked up the pace. Pushed hard. Into the wind. 13 minutes in I yelled at Mike (who was pulling) that we only had 2 minutes left. He picked up the pace. Sandy and I held on. One minute to go I started barking at Mike... GO GO GO!! 30 seconds left... GO GO GO!!!! I continued to bark. We really pushed that last minute. It was awesome.
Anyway, I did the typical route with them and then, um, had to turn around and go back out about 12 miles to a beach park that would serve as my final turn around. I will admit that I had a slight low point at this time, saying goodbye to them. I felt hungry even though I had consumed all the nutrition I was planning. My crotch was on fire because those bike shorts just weren't cutting it anymore. There was a ton of traffic at noon on Kam Hwy (why was everyone who owns a car on Oahu driving it around the island today???). And I felt like I was just covered in road grime, sweat, sunscreen, and a film of slippery fuel vapor. Yuck. I guess that really was the extent of my problems though. My legs and heart and lungs felt fine and I had no thoughts of cutting the ride short, even though I was so close to my house.
As I was approaching the final turn-around, I found myself catching a lone rider up ahead. He also pulled into the same beach park. I wasn't really feeling very social at this point and wasn't game for any trivial conversation, so I just went about my business filling my water bottles and splashing my face and arms with water in the bathroom. Back on my bike, I started heading out. The other rider was standing there looking very proud of himself and asked where I was headed. "Kaneohe" was my short reply. He gave me a smug look and with his best peacock expression he said, "I'm going back to Hawaii Kai." Just so you know, he was telling me that he was riding further than me because Hawaii Kai is about 35 miles while Kaneohe was a measly 12. I swear, I wasn't going to say anything to him, but I thought about Jen Harrison and how she writes about the snippy things she says to people sometimes, and I just couldn't help myself. I said, "Well I'm 104 miles into a 116 mile ride so Kaneohe is far enough for me today." Then I rode off. I guess I can get kinda bitchy when I'm tired.
Anyway, I felt solid riding home. I knew I was going to be able to run, so that felt good. A quick change, a banana, and kiss to Scott and Moana and I was out the door and running. YEP! No problem with the run. I wasn't supposed to push the pace until the end so I just cruised the first part. It was 1:30 in the afternoon on a hot sunny day, but I swear I didn't even notice the heat. And when it was time to pick it up, I could! I love that. I pushed that last mile (mostly uphill) home in 7:45. Seriously? Who am I? Not the old Michelle, that's for sure. The old Michelle couldn't run like that. Wouldn't have even attempted to run like that. Especially not after 116 miles on the bike. Wouldn't have even believed it was possible.
Anyway, I'm really proud of that workout. And the best part? I didn't even fall flat on my bed afterward. Nope. I drank my recovery drink in the shower and then rushed out the door to Sara's First Birthday Party! Some of you may read Kelley's blog... her daughter is 5 weeks older than Moana and they've been beach buddies for the last year or so... it's so cute to watch them together as they get older. Anyway, I spent the rest of the afternoon there at the party. I ate a big piece of birthday cake with ice cream... and fed some to Moana too... who loved it, by the way... :)
Now it's recover recover recover until noon tomorrow when I will attempt to run 20 miles at the hottest point in the day. That'll be a major feat for sure if I pull it off.