I met my cycling team for a ride this morning, it was kind of a shake-out event for some new recruits. We had a good turnout with a group of almost 30 rolling out in the cold, damp air. My head wasn’t in the ride at all, and I was regretting my decision to even go for about the first 20 minutes. Then I broke out of my shell a bit (not always the easiest thing for me) and started making conversation with some new faces. Turned my whole day around. Ended up having really good conversation, and by the time we hit the hills I was feeling great and climbing comfortably with the front group. Over the top and down a long descent I sped up to let the leaders know which way to turn ahead, then dropped back and yelled at a couple of stragglers to get on my wheel. I thought I would make short work of towing them back up to the group, but it became a very long grind. I sat in the wind for miles dangling 100 yards off the group with a couple of guys counting on me to get them up there. I felt like I could make a huge push and get on myself, but it would pop the riders off my wheel to do so. Man, that was tough duty for a while. One of the guys with me finally took a pull and my legs were relieved to have the break.
We got lucky when the group of 11 ahead got confused about a turn and slowed just enough for us to latch on. Then we hit some really tough climbs and I was happy – it was every man for himself now. I dug super deep and went over the top in the front group of 4. We finally pulled over and waited several minutes for everyone to show up, then rode back into town. It was great, I was really glad to have gone. I met some cool guys and had my best ride in months.
After that, it was lunch time with the family. We did some shopping, picked up some videos and pizza, and then Malcolm and I went for a 5 mile run just as the rain that had been threatening all day began to fall. We ran a really fun trail that parallels the South Platte River through a state park near our house. I shot some video with my cell phone just for fun.