Sunday, February 20, 2011

Weekend News

In second grade Mondays started with a required documentation of everything we did that weekend. Most kids wrote a page or so. I would write, like, 14 pages, documenting everything I ate, what I wore, what I did, what I saw and what I felt. After we were done writing we had to stand up and read it to the class. Our teacher called it Weekend News, "news" obviously being a subjective term. Regardless, second-grade habits die hard so I bring you Weekend News, the February 20th edition.

With no commitments this weekend Bill and I found ourselves with plenty of time to train, and no good excuse not to.

And now I am sort of hurting. At least the leg part of me. I think my legs are pissed at me and are trying to vacate the rest of my person. Ouch. I used them a lot this weekend, starting bright and early Friday morning for an hour spin on the trainer. Most Fridays that counts as enough for the day. Because who wants to start the weekend with exercise?

A weekend of training births mad amounts of laundry. Fun.
Apparently I do, at least this weekend. And I wasn't even entirely anti-social about it. Abby organized a night-time hike through Wissahickon Park and couldn't have picked a better night for it. The night was clear, the night was calm, and most importantly the night was warm. I even contemplated heading out in just a tank top and arm warmers (but changed my mind). About 10 of us trekked through the trails for about two hours, looking much like The Seven (or Ten) Dwarfs heading out to work for the day as we lit the park with our headlamps and trudged along with our packs.

I wish that Philly was safe enough that I felt comfortable heading out on my own in the dark -- I am a night person (not in a vampire way, just in an "I like to stay up late" way) and felt like I could have gone on for a few more hours. I was a tiny bit sad when we reached our endpoint after about 5 miles on the trails.

My late-night hike must have worn me out -- by the time I peeled my eyelids open on Saturday it was 10:30. Uh, when left to my own devices I have the sleep habits of a 14-year-old. Way to sleep the day away, Laur.

Our big exciting plan for Saturday was to run to the gym, lift and run home, about a 6.5-mile round-trip. The way there is basically entirely downhill except for a few flat sections so we got to the gym quickly. It was at the gym, however, that I got stupid. Doing 100 lunges on each leg with weights in each hand seemed like a reasonable idea at the time, but as soon as I was done I realized I was dumb. If pain is weakness leaving the body, than what the hell is weakness entering the legs? I knew the run home was going to be miserable and I was right.

While I was lunging at the gym Bill was apparently consuming mass quantities of speed. When we set out for what I was hoping was going to be more of a trek than a run home, Bill took off and I struggled to keep up as we climbed back to our front door.

About half-way home he yelled at me to keep up, pissing me off. I did what any normal wife would do -- turned around and, invigorated by my pissed-offedness, sprinted in the opposite direction and took the long way home, adding about 3/4ths of a mile onto my trip.

Our plan for today? A 40-mile round trip ride to Valley Forge with a run wedged in between. I woke up to tired legs and the idea of suggesting to Bill that we spend the day sitting on the couch eating chips and drinking beer instead of doing something silly like training. But with races looming ahead I knew this was no time to be lazy. Although I secretly hoped that the trail to Valley Forge was still snowy like it was last week.

We headed out at around noon. The ride to Valley Forge is downhill for 6 miles followed by about 14 miles of perfectly flat paved trail. About 10 miles into the ride Bill asked me how I felt. "Tired," I answered honestly. "We aren't even half-way there," he reminded me.


We made it there uneventfully and I chowed down on Rice Krispie treats and Wheat Thins (endurance food of champions) before we locked our bikes Pee-Wee Herman-style and headed out on foot for an hour on the trails.

Two U-locks, two cords and a combination lock equals
don't steal our bikes, please.
Our time on foot was fine. Bill ate a PB&J along the way and I took a nap.

Just joshing you! I wasn't really asleep!
Then, the moment I had not been waiting for -- the ride home. I think I was just anxious to get back to the house because I took off, Bill right behind. He eventually took the lead and I drafted off of him, but we were making good time. And we sort of had to move -- we'd left later than we should have but didn't have lights with us and were racing the sunset.

All was going perfectly fine. I was tired and seemingly felt every muscle in my legs working hard with each pedal stroke, but I wasn't splayed out on the side of the trail having a temper tantrum so I was happy with the way things were going. We hit the main climb on the way home and while I was slowing I felt ok and reminded myself that the training would hopefully pay off next month in the duathlon and in April for the Rev3.

We were about two miles from home when I heard a loud ping followed by a hiss.

"Uh, maybe someone is celebrating  Sunday with a bottle of champagne and, simultaneously, there is a snake next to me hissing?," I hoped.

Alas, this was not the case and I yanked my bike onto the sidewalk as my back tire slowly leaked out air. In my 11 or so years of riding bikes semi-regularly, I've had two flats -- one the first time I tried to jump a curb (I thought you could just hit it full-force and the bike would do the rest) and the second at about mile 1,185 of a 1,200-mile bike trip we took one summer.

And then today, 2 miles from our house with darkness creeping up on us. I said bad words loudly a bunch of times and then got to work. By the time I'd yanked off the wheel, took off the tire and removed the punctured tube, Bill was ready to go with the new tube and we had everything back together in about five minutes. The culprit? A giant nail.

Hooray for teamwork.

We made it home just as the last bit of sunshine disappeared. I think that tomorrow I will be hurting a bit. I'm contemplating just staying home from work and then trying to convince my boss that I thought I had the day off for President's Day. Think it will work?


Anonymous said...

Seriously! Your weekends look like fun but they would totally kill me! Give it a try for the holiday tomorrow. You never know ;-)

Abby said...

Brent and I felt the same way on Friday night, wishing it could have gone on a little longer. We thought about suggesting it, but then remembered that Bill hates hiking :)

Julie said...

I cannot remember the last time I slept in until 10:30. That sounds amazing! I also don't think I've ever hiked at night...that sounded LOVELY!

Sorry about the flat tire. Grrr!

Anonymous said...

Phew! I'm beat! I need to go watch some TV and then take a nap on the couch!

Laurie said...

Julie, I have mad sleeping skillz. It's a gift, what can I say.

Mallory said...

You look like you have so much fun! I wish I could have gone out with you all on Friday night! So much fun!!! I've never had to change a flat on a bike which is a good thing because I don't know how!!!

Bill said...

In my defense, I did get you to run on Saturday.