I'm deeply engaged in the season. No, not the holiday falala well met good fellow thing, the seasonal affective disorder thing. According to our wiki friends, this syndrome comes complete with "... may sleep too much, have little energy, and crave sweets and starchy foods. They may also feel depressed." Hey, that's exactly what I was going to complain about! Except it's more like "get no sleep, have little energy, eat sweets and fatty starches and drink too much." Not to mention the whole "don't want to socialize or go out or see anyone or join friends" thing. Yeah, it's my normal winter thing, only a little worse than usual.
Ok, enough about that. I've been almost keeping up with training. On Thursday Bree and I went for a 5+ mile run. To guarantee we'd do the entire distance we parked a car at each end of the trail and ran from one to the other. We lucked out by the rain stopping just as we got out of the car and only having cold, windy weather to deal with. It was a good run and the total of what I accomplished on my day off. For the first time in umpteen years I didn't go to my friend's house to celebrate with her (see above re: don't want to socialize). I felt very bad cutting out on the holiday celebration but they were probably better off without me.
I joined my family twice this week for Mexican food, once with just my bro's family and once with my mom, my nephew's friend and two of my bro's friends included. It's that whole fatty foods and drinking thing, but at the second dinner I wasn't even interested in eating anything or drinking too much since I planned to ride the next morning.
And ride I did. Another crispy cold, bright sunny morning. I got to the team's meeting place in Pleasanton at about 7:50 am and wondered where everyone else was. I was under the impression that we were meeting, as usual, at 8:00 am. My bad. We were meeting at 8:30 so I sat in my car, polluting the air with the exhaust from the car that was keeping me warm. I've got to do something about my issues with being on time, which usually result in my being early. I've also got to do something about reading the team emails correctly.
Everyone else finally showed up and we headed off. This was to be another hilly ride, the famous Palomares route. Down Foothill, along Niles Canyon (damn those cars are fast and close!), then sharp turn up, down shift NOW and climb for 20 miles. Huh? It was only 4 miles? It felt like I was climbing for hours. For the most part, while it wasn't easy it also wasn't killer. There were a few spots where I thought my lungs were going to jump past my throat and out my mouth and go running off on their own. After one incredibly steep part, one very long tough stretch, I pulled over to catch my breath and stop wheezing. It bothered me that I had to stop but I was losing it and decided that oxygen was very important. I continued on, finally getting to where our group had reassembled at the top of the hill.
I didn't hang around too long but I wanted most people to leave before me since I was scared of the downhills. The first part down was steep and twisty and I felt like I'd pitch over the bars. Then the road straightened out and I decided to see how fast I could go without toppling over or skidding off the side of the road. I went much faster than I thought I could, but I'm not sure exactly what speed I was going since I turned Mr. Garmin off at the top of the hill and whoopsie forgot to turn it back on until I was halfway down. Yes, I blurted some very rude things when I realized it but I was going fast enough that nobody heard me. Hopefully.
I was worn out and the rest of the ride went slowly for me. I didn't push until I got to the downhill part then I let it go again and whizzed along. I knew that part of the road well and made it just under 31 mph, the fastest I've gone on this bike. I was very happy to finish and put warm, dry boots on my numb toes (yes, numb again). A group of us headed over to the Hopyard for lunch and a lovely winter brew was enough to put me down for the remainder of the day.
Today I ran with Anita and Mary Ann. Although scheduled for 8 miles, once again we ran 6. The weather was great for running; low 40s and sunny. Whenever we took walk breaks we'd steam up our glasses. We were speedy, for us, and finished the entire run (including the regular walk breaks) at an 11:58 average. I don't think I've done 6 miles at that speed in quite a while. Of course, for most of the run I wasn't able to talk since I was breathing too hard, but I felt fine once I finished. My legs were tired, especially my quads, but it was great running with Mary Ann again.
I rounded out the weekend with mom stuff and normal weekend stuff. I've been doing a lot of reading, a lot of knitting and a lot of dvd watching. That goes very well with doing a lot of eating, a lot of drinking and a lot of hanging out at home.
Is it spring yet?