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Cycling Camp Part 3

(note: scroll down a few pages if you want to read Part 1 or Part 2) 

April 20th: Day 5

Tuesday was sunny but still a bit chilly. Sleeves, knee warmers and a vest were required. An hour and a half loop. Nothing outstanding to brag about except that the word pain didn’t even cross my mind during the entire time. Knowing that just a few days prior to that ride I was aching like crazy and could barely turn the legs, there is, after all, something memorable about this ride. In fact, being pain-free is an unforgettable feeling!

Oh, that and maybe the entire kilometre we had to do in the old dirt road…Maybe Mr.Garmin thought we had our cross bikes?!

(Looking back, I’m definately not made for Paris-Roubaix!)

April 21st: Day 6

Let it rain, let it rain, let it rain! Perfect timing for a perfect day off!

  • Bookstore
  • Grande Americano
  • Reading, lots of reading
  • Dinner at Hank’s Smoke House; famous for its smoked chicken and fries
  • And yes, I did have some brownies…with ice cream!

April 22nd: Day 7

Run Forest Run!

I love dogs; you all know that, right? I’ve got a thing for black ones…

But when I’m on my bike, I am sooo afraid of them! I totally freeze when one chases me. Instead of splashing water in their face or sprinting, I slow down and scream. Like this is gonna help! It drives Pat nuts when I react like that but I can’t help it.

Anyhow, on yesterday’s ride, we were chatting along the way when a black furry animal came out of nowhere. While I was screaming, Pat was trying to calm me down by saying that the hairy creature actually looked friendly. I’m sorry but when I’m riding my bike and a dog (perceived as a wild animal) is running next to my ankles, the word friendly is not the first one that comes to my mind! I was facing a vicious killer. I kept on going, slowly, scared that he would cut me off, waiting to feel his teeth  grabbing my feet.

Pat wasn’t paying attention to the road and we ended in a dead end. Ah. I had to put my feet down and face the enemy. I looked down to my left: a Boarder Collie. I’m petrified by a Boarder Collie! Common. Out of breath, he looked like he was even smiling at me! In any other circumstance, I would bend down and pet him but at that time, since I didn’t want the chase to start over, I showed no affection. I wanted him to be gone. Go home dog, goooooo! He came closer and tried to kiss me. He liked us! Noooo. This didn’t look good. The only option to get rid of him was obviously to sprint him out.

Was I ready for it? No. Did I have a choice? No. I took Pat’s wheel, got into a fairly good speed and kept on going. Sprinting wasn’t enough; our little Forest was still hanging on. I could feel my legs burning, praying for no hills. We were actually going downhill, false flat. This wasn’t a sprint, it was a TT.  And it was fun…For the 3 of us! No way was he gonna surrender.

We ended up at a fork and we knew we had to stop to make sure we were going the right way. When we got there, a herd of cows came running towards us, wondering what the hell was going on! While Pat checked his Garmin, Forest just lied in the middle of the street, waiting for the TT to start over.

This guy wasn’t going anywhere, he liked us. He had made 2 wonderful new friends to hang out with. And he was getting a great workout out of this new friendship, at no extra-cost!

A few minutes of rest and we took off. Same strategy; hang in Pat’s wheel as long as you can. Finally, we crossed a road where 2 pick-ups were waiting to go. Forest had no other choice than to stop. Since we were way ahead of him, we were safe. Sadly, he watched us go. After 30 minutes, we could finally say “game over”. We had won!

Unfortunately, my back and hip didn’t appreciate the amount of work they had to carry out. They had sent me several signs to my brain but in the middle of all the action, I had decided not to listen to anything. I was pedaling like there were tomorrow! Too much fun. Now I was paying for it…

 April 23rd: Day 8

Oh boy. Not an easy day. Was expecting that bitter twist though. I’m sure some of you did too. In French we say: “Je l’ai cherché”. Yep. Pushed a bit too much yesterday. At least I had a good time. So did Forest!! May sound weird but deep down, I’m glad I did. By digging deep inside on the bike, it’s somewhat reassuring to know that’s I still got it; the power is still there, the engine (my heart) is A1, it’s just the body parts that need to be replaced. Any big special on high quality women’s hip at Walmart? I’ll take a small.

In a few words, my Friday at the office:

  1. Ice
  2. Heated brace for my lower back
  3. Cocktail: anti-inflammatory, muscle relaxants, pain killers
  4. Lying on my back
  5. And most important, trying to stay positive which, to be honest, I was unable to do.

Sometimes, when  I can’t deal with this back and forth situation, when it’s too much to handle, I allow  myself a time out. A few hours of feeling sorry for myself, wishing I could do the things I use to do without having to deal with so many painful consequences. Such a high price to pay.

But after a few hours of dark thoughts, and since I’m a stubborn girl( who loves cycling and who happens to be pretty good at it), I lift my head up high, swallow my pride and continue on this roller coaster emotional journey that I am on.  

Wishing all of you a great weekend,

Mari-jo


11 Responses to “Cycling Camp Part 3”


  1. 24 avril 2010 à 1:45

    I really wish I could just run out to Walmart and buy a new hip for you. I’m sorry that thing keeps on acting up for you and I hope that one day the pain is all gone.
    Thanks for the update on your training….I also hope the dogs stay away from chasing you as well. Man I don’t like it when they do that. I love dogs, but not the ones who chase me on my bike.
    All the best and I’m looking forward to catching up with you more next time.

  2. 24 avril 2010 à 2:01

    1. Thrilled for you that you had a great ride — pain free. 2. Not to make light of your fear, but the « screaming » part about the dog made me laugh out loud. Really enjoying your diary.

  3. 3 Michael Pratchard
    24 avril 2010 à 4:55

    You should send the owner of the dog a bill for exercising his animal! A Border Collie can run & run….. Anyway, hope the hip is better soon! Better luck on the next ride!

  4. 24 avril 2010 à 7:00

    Glad you had a pain-free ride and the story about the collie is awesome. The pic of him just laying in the road waiting is great. I don’t like dealing with dogs while riding either so you’re not alone.

    You’re last two paragraphs about a roller coaster ride – I’m in the seat next to you. Just keeping looking forward.

    Hope the pain subsides and you can get more riding in.

    Is that your bike in the pic above? Sweet! Always liked the look of the Wiliers.

  5. 5 Rickie Rainwater
    24 avril 2010 à 7:09

    Was getting ready to pull a very hard climb today when a nice Lab ran out of his yard. I slowed and told him to get back in his @#$#^ yard! He seemed to understand, but it really messed up my concentration. I once crashed on a bridge last September. I fixed my wheel and continued on climbing a very hard section. At the top of the hill, a pack of young dogs chased me. I was so full of adrenalin that I threatened to take them on. They sensed I was not to be fooled with and scampered away. I always fear they will run in front of me and end my cycling and possibly my life. Serious business dogs. I love dogs, but they have their place. I guess I could spray them, but I don’t like having to fool with them at all. Glad you are having a good time.
    Rickie

  6. 6 Carol
    24 avril 2010 à 9:11

    Pretty pictures, so green!!!

    Hank’s Steakhouse sounds like a good place to eat – every night. :-O

  7. 25 avril 2010 à 6:26

    Your story is inspirational!!!! Keep plugging away. I hope you don’t mind, but I was laughing pretty hard at the « forest » story. The images I had in my head were priceless. Thanks for brightening my day. And for the record, I love dogs too; but don’t like meeting them when I am on my bike. Keep the posts coming, I look forward to reading them.

  8. 8 tyrider
    25 avril 2010 à 6:40

    Bien au-delà de la douleur, la persévérance nous amène immanquablement aux sommets de la réussite… bien au-delà de la souffrance, la passion nous amène immanquablement à la persévérance! Continu MJ tu es l’incarnation de ce qu’est cette passion qui nous pousse à toujours dépasser nos peurs (chiens) et bobos. Prends soins de toi, des bons bizz bazz buzz pour guérir les bobos.

  9. 9 PeterM
    25 avril 2010 à 5:36

    Glad to see you enjoyed the ride despite being scared……I’m glad the pain seems to be diminishing ride by ride…. Still waiting patiently on the pictures of izzy and that famous first ride recap ….. See you for coffee tomorrow…

  10. 10 Racegirl_
    26 avril 2010 à 2:07

    This is one of the reason I say you are one of my heroes! Keep inspiring everyone you can.

  11. 4 mai 2010 à 7:17

    I’m so glad everything worked out for you and the camp ended on a much better note! You have great stories and memories. Hold on to the good ones and remember how you were able to overcome the pain.
    Here’s to a smooth cycling season for you and that awesome new bike!


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