Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Weathering the storm.

Today was a much much better day. Not so much the weather, but the race. I woke up with a much better attitude than yesterday. Even though the rain was still coming down I’m beginning to just accept and deal with it as we can’t really do much about it. I learned late last night that my old college crew coach, Kate Brandon, was in Girdwood (where we stayed last night) for the summer. So when we got to the course start this morning I saw her smiling face and that started the day off great. Kate is all around awesome and she totally inspired me to get out there and do my best. Thanks to her my weekly motto is ‘Weathering the storm, Alaska style’ Thanks Kate for getting me off to a good start..:)

Today was an 11 mile time trial along a bike path in Girdwood. Since the path was so narrow we started out fastest to slowest to have minimal passing along the route so I started in 4th, 30 seconds behind Katz. I was feeling great and ended catching Katz around mile 2. We are learning pretty quickly that the time trial is my kind of race and not so much hers. Like hills, I have better luck at the shorter races where Katz is the opposite, and she rocks it on the long rides and climbs, where I struggle. (See yesterday’s blog) Being that this race was only 11 miles I knew I couldn’t make up too much time from yesterday but I was gonna give it a good shot. I passed mile 2 and continued on my way to the turn around at a decent pace. Right before the turn around there was this big hill to go down, just to turn around and go right back up it. Halfway up the hill Sherry, the other female racer, and I passed each other and she yells out, “I just saw a bear on the path, be careful” I’m not going to lie, that freaked me out a little. Until that point I was all about seeing a bear but I got a bit nervous to know that there was one lurking nearby. I think it actually made me go a bit faster to try and get off the course. Come to find out it was a baby bear which is even worse, as I’m sure the mom was just waiting to attack. The rain was coming down so hard making it extremely difficult to see so I doubt I would have seen it if it were right in front of me. I kept thinking I was going to run into it with a friendly bump on my part. What a story that would make, bumping a bear with my bike. Thankfully that didn’t happen. So with no bear sightings to report, I kept going strong and finished in about 55 minutes. I’m not sure how many minutes I finished ahead of Katz but after yesterday, I think I closed the overall time gap between us by a few good minutes.

We got to go back to the hotel to shower before leaving Girdwood which was awesome and we made some time for the gift shop as well.
From the hotel we headed for Whittier and got to go through the longest tunnel in North America. I have no clue how long it is.

So now we are sitting on a ferry crossing over to Cordova on the Prince William Sound. We were told we would see some sea life, but the excitement so far has been sea lions. It was thrilling.

We are in Cordova for two nights, which makes us happy. We don’t have the greatest cell/ internet/ anything service while we are there so there won’t be any pictures but hopefully a blog each night.Tomorrow is another road race, this one 38 miles. We were told it was flat but after looking at the course, it’s definitely not. I think I’ve learned to embrace the rain and after yesterday, I think I can handle the elements. Or at least work with them.

So until tomorrow, Peace Out!

1 comment:

Al Brittain said...

Melissa -

I'm definitely enjoying following your adventures from here in Colorado Springs - I sent our mutual buddy John Register the link for the site. I spent three years in Fairbanks a long time ago, but where you are is way different from there.