Monday, June 28, 2010

The Motivation

Have you ever had one of those moments where you KNOW that you're working hard, doing awesome, hitting your watts, in the proper heart rate zone,and things are just peachy? And that because you are doing so wonderfully, the work that you're putting forth feels effortless.

I can confirm, this is EXACTLY how I felt roughly two hours into my 4+ hour Saturday bike-run workout. Nope - nothing like Ironman training (thank god!), but my LONGEST bike ride since Kona. All three hours and thirty-one minutes.

Pure. Bliss.

But then something happened - unexpected and wonderful at the same time.

I was descending Del Dios Highway from Elfin Forest. And yes - while the descent is wonderful, nothing the least bit unexpected happened during this part. And given my history (*ahem *cough *cough) of sub-par descents, the boring SAFE kinds are by far the best.

I knew there were two or three riders behind me - so I gestured for them to pass me, to move ahead whenever they felt comfortable. Bombing the decent at 45+ mph with unpredictable canyon winds and traffic in the next lane just isn't my style. Yeah.

One guy moved ahead, but the other two tucked in behind me until the way way way bottom.

And I don't really know why the girl said what she said, or gave me the look that she did - but as she was passing me while drafting off the wheel from the guy right in front of her, she commented, "Hang in there."

It was the tone of voice that made me cringe.



Like..I'm riding cautiously down a CANYON, avoiding glass and debris and traffic, and you pass me when I'm soft pedaling at the bottom while drafting off your male cohort. Awesome.

The trio hooked up together and rode ahead, up the inclines towards Rancho Santa Fe.

And before I explain any more, I should say that whenever I ride Elfin Forest in this direction - I ALWAYS dig a little deeper, push a little harder from the outskirts of Rancho Santa Fe through to the Solana Beach sign before San Deguito park. Always. Doesn't matter if it's an "easy" ride or MAKE YOURSELF HURT kind of ride. I have a special place in my heart for the smooth hills and rolling terrain.

Simply stated: it's a pleasure to ride. And I'm happiest when I'm working my tail end off. Hello? That's just something about my competitive personality, I guess.

Half way up the next hill - I made my move. I thought briefly about giving the trio a minute or two head start, and then catching them. BUT - that seemed so anticlimactic... like I was letting her win by easing up and then powering forward. No go.

I wanted to make the pass, wanted to work hard, and wanted to give myself the satisfaction of blowing past someone who made me feel like a slow rider.

And yes - I know it's all in my head. I'll readily admit that, and then some. But at the same point - this IS how I felt, and I wanted to do something about that. So I did.

Throwing the bike into the Big Ring, I put my head down, got aggressive, got aero, and rode my ass off for the next 14 minutes. It was WONDERFUL. After the first minute, I stopped thinking about the group behind me, and instead focused on the elements that I could control...

Proper gearing up the hills (because they HURT), positive self-talk to PUSH THROUGH the hard parts, keeping my head down in aero and holding my bars in that no-guts-no-glory-all-or-nothing grip that hurts so good, and riding my bike with the fearlessness and abandoment that I so love,

After the first hill or two, I forgot about how I looked, what things felt like, the burning in my quads, or the grips on my bars... it was just me and my bike. And for the first time in a really long time, WE were fast and happy.

Usually I'm not one to be motivated by other people... It pretty much comes from within. However, once in a while - dropping the hammer is AWESOME.

Speaking of hammer dropping... A BIG HUGE AWESOME CONGRATULATIONS to everyone who raced last weekend. It was a doozy, eh? Extra special congrats to Angela on earning her Kona slot, and to Meredith - my awesome friend who raced her FIRST triathlon since becoming a new Mom to uber-kid Soren. I am so happy for and proud of everyone.

Let's keep on keeping on...


San said...

Congrats on showing her who really rules the road!!

Have a great new week.

ADC said...

That is sooo funny.

Melanie said...

Please say you told her to 'hang in there' as you passed!

Damie said...

yes- so funny. I know how you feel for sure! so glad to see you out there getting fired up. I know you are happy to feel that way again too.

Kim said...

nice job marit! way to "hang in there"! (p.s. what a bitch! i would have dropped her like a bad habit too!) so happy to hear you got a fire in your belly and pushed yourself. good girl!

Laura said...

Nice, Marit, nice!

Angela and David Kidd said...

Okay, way to rock that ride and I totally know what you mean about "that tone." It would have motivated me to kick her ass as well.

And thanks for the congrats - I've so appreciated all of your support as I've chased that spot!

Teresa said...

Way to WIN! Love it!


Teresa said...

Way to WIN! Love it!


Melissa said...

Oh, this is a great post! OMgosh, that comment would have really urked me too. Hang in there? Whatever!

Midwestern Dot said...

I love dropping the hammer! Way to show her how well you can 'hang in there'!

MaineSport said...

Marit- I just heard through the grapevine (Jen, Angela) you have an issue with PEs. I just got out of the hospital with the same. Check out I'd love to compare notes and learn more about what happened.

Alili said...

Heeheehee, way to work, Marit. :)

Trigirlpink said...

"Hang in there" Grrrrrrrrrrr... and you resisted saying ANYTHING as you blew by her?????? Actually silence speaks volumes sometimes. Hey! I love the outdoor masters' swim foto! You are so lucky to have an outdoor swim facility!! Hope the kitty kats are well.

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

Great post! I think it's awesome that you passed them back! Way to go!