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Long Ride. Speedy Run.

by Meghann on February 16, 2013

Three cheers for a great morning ride and run!

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Ahhh.. so much fun! It’s crazy the difference between riding solo and riding in a group. Not only does riding with a group push me to go faster and farther, but the group is so much more entertaining than going solo. They make cycling fun!

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We were all at the trailhead at 9:00am this morning ready to ride. It was a little chilly, but nothing unbearable. Rumor has it the lows are supposed to get down to the 30s tonight, so I’m glad we chose to ride this morning and not tomorrow. πŸ™‚

I have fast friends- and though I love them all to pieces – I’m always a teensy bit nervous riding with them. The bike is my weakest sport and I pretty much resemble the little-engine-that-could when I’m on the trail. Luckily my friends told me up front they weren’t going to leave me in the dust. They were going to take it easy and stick to my pace. Have I mentioned how awesome my friends are?

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This was only my second trail ride on the B16 (I think the name is sticking). I’ve been riding her on and off on the trainer in the garage, but all the good trails are a 20-30 minute drive away and it’s simply not safe to ride my bike on the roads that surround my house. This was also my longest ride on the B16. We did a two hour ride, which covered a little more than 32 miles. After 32 miles on the seat, I’m ready to take her back for my final fitting. They didn’t cut the aero bars when I was there last because they wanted to wait until I settled on the bike. The bars haven’t been a problem since I’ve mainly been riding on the trainer in aero position, but I realized today that my knees hit the bars when I ride the bike in an upright position. Ouch. My knees were tired of being hit so they started pointing outward when I rode. I’m no bike expert, but I know that’s probably not a good thing.

Our group kept a steady pace on the way out and I mainly concentrated on becoming comfortable on my new bike. On the way back we practiced riding in a line and worked on intervals. The whole reason I’ve been scared away from riding with any cycling groups around town is because riding in a line scares the crap out of me. You’re basically riding right on the wheel of the person in front of you while the person behind you rides right on your wheel. I’m not a great rider, so my big fear is I won’t be able to keep up or I’ll miss something important and crash.

Riding in a line scares me because my experience is limited. I need to practice in smaller group settings to build my confidence before I can dive in with a big group. This is why when my coach recommended practicing riding in a line, I was scared as hell, but excited to get some experience and build my confidence.

There were four of us and we each took the lead for 30 seconds at a time. I learned that you never want to hit the brake while riding in a line (or have the person behind you come crashing in to you), you should only be in the aero position if you’re in the lead, and you need to be really, really close to the person in front of you to reap the benefits of their draft. I was antsy and nervous through the whole process, but was proud I was facing my fear of riding in a line. It really wasn’t that bad and the constant change of lead to back kept the ride interesting. I was even proud of myself for keeping up with the line as long as I could (we increased 1 mph every minute) and was okay when I had to drop. I gave it my all and pushed as long as I could.

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After our ride, we changed into our running shoes and went for a run. I thought we were doing an easy 2 mile jog, but Felipe had other plans. He’s a big believer that you should follow all bike rides with fast runs to really build endurance and speed. So, in his logic, it’s better to follow a long bike ride with a quick and speedy 1 mile run than a 6 mile jog. Honestly, that makes sense to me. The first mile off the bike is the worst and really where you should be concentrating your training.

We did a .3 mile warm-up, then Felipe set up a rough .4 mile loop. He wanted us running 4 loops as fast as we could and press lap on our Garmins each lap to see our final splits (we ran all 4 lap straight through – no rest).

I can’t tell you the last time I gave a run all I had and boy did it burn. I went out way, way, way too fast and suffered in the final laps. I think my first split average was 6:45 and my last average was 7:40. Not good. Not good at all.

It’s been so long since I raced a 5k for time that I forgot about that nasty habit that used to plague me. Some bad habits are just too hard to give up. This morning’s run was a nice reminder to watch my first couple of miles during my 10k next month and NOT go out too fast. I’m going to mix up my speed training in the coming weeks in hopes of avoiding that.

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(That was actually 2.3 miles. For some reason DailyMile prefers to round down with miles.)

We hit up a nearby Starbucks after our run and I cashed in my free drink reward for a caramel frappuccino.

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I love saving free drinks for long rides or runs. πŸ™‚

I also drank my weight in water.

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Megn? That’s new.

The amazing burger I had when I got home went down so fast that the camera missed it. Whoops. What can I say? I was hungry!

Now I’m wiped, but in a good way. Today’s ride and run was exactly what I needed as I continue to build my base for Ironman Florida. Any ride or run when you finish with a smile on a face is a good one. πŸ™‚

Have you ever rode in a group line? Were you nervous the first time you joined one?

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jean February 16, 2013 at 7:26 pm

That’s an intense morning! Triathlon training sounds hard ;). Can’t say I’ve ever been in a “group line” – the idea of being directly behind someone moving that fast does NOT appeal to my cautious self.

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2 Allen February 16, 2013 at 7:38 pm

I enjoyed reading your post! When I am training for a 5k or even a 10k I tend to be a couple of minutes slower than race day. I always run faster on race day. Running with a group of people makes me push harder. I also have a hard time watching my pace during the first mile or so during 5 and 10ks. I have never competed or participated in any type of bike race, but I am always setting new goals to reach. Thank you for the great post!
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3 jenna February 16, 2013 at 8:15 pm

I’m jealous of your weather! That workout sounds tough — it’s been a LONG time since I ran for speed!
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4 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats February 16, 2013 at 8:21 pm

I’ve ran in a big group in a 2×2 line, but never ridden a bike! That would make me nervous, good job!
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5 alissa February 16, 2013 at 10:09 pm

That’s exactly my biggest fear on the bike. Riding with other people terrifies me!
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6 Beth @ Running with the Sunrise February 16, 2013 at 10:10 pm

It sounds like you’re really getting the most out of your new bike and getting in some quality time with her. It was really nice of your friends to make sure that you were comfortable pace–those are the best type of training friends to have. I hope you’re recovering well from your workouts!
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7 Cecilia @MommiesRun February 16, 2013 at 10:29 pm

Sounds like an awesome day! I’m the same way with my Starbucks free drinks! For some reason the freebies taste better after a long run πŸ™‚

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8 Jenny February 16, 2013 at 11:09 pm

Excellent. Training with my husband and 3 young kids (ages 6, 7, 8) we always stay in a line. Husband sets the pace (I go too fast πŸ˜‰ ) and I bring up the rear. Teaching the kids young!!
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9 Sara @ Fitcupcaker February 17, 2013 at 8:02 am

I’ve never done that but I would be nervous! I’m so jealous though its way too cold to bike here!
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10 Kayla February 17, 2013 at 10:47 am

What a great workout! Way to stick to it!! The running after the ride sounds like a great push and strategy for your training!
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11 Eesh February 17, 2013 at 11:44 am

I’ve always wanted to cycle but I figured I’d need to learn to run first (without blowing so quickly)…still working on endurance. A friend of mine is basically the cycling champ here…one day, I’d love to challenge him…ONE DAY!

Sounded like an amazing ride & run though. Hope you’re having an awesome weekend.

xx

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12 Tara February 17, 2013 at 2:35 pm

Wow, I couldn’t ever imagine biking 32 miles! (I just learned how to ride a bike last year :P) But, I am training for my first half marathon and I am so excited. Good luck with Ironman!
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13 [email protected] February 17, 2013 at 3:09 pm

Riding in a line would make me totally nervous!! I’m usually all over the place anyways, so this would make me really antsy
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14 Emily N February 18, 2013 at 1:08 pm

Great work with the brick!
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15 Kristina February 18, 2013 at 7:54 pm

Pace lining with a tri bike would be a challenge – if you look at most pace lines and group rides, people are on road bikes. I definitely like hanging on someone’s wheel if they’ll haul me for a bit and then I’ll haul them – less work for everyone and a faster pace all around.
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16 Mark @ fullhalfglass.com February 19, 2013 at 6:45 am

I’ve been out of the saddle since last August with injury and love to read posts like yours. It keeps me motivated and reminds me of why I love to ride. Another couple of weeks and hopefully I’ll be back dancing on the pedals
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17 Tim February 19, 2013 at 8:08 pm

Paceline riding just takes practice to gain confidence. Try riding as straight (don’t wobble) and smooth as possible. As you mentioned never brake hard. Come join the Suncoast bike club Saturdays at 8am (Tampa Road and US 19) 100+ riders break into 4 levels. Sometime we even have paceline clinics.

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