When I'm riding my "real" bike I still need to concentrate on shifting, staying upright, unclipping at stops -- you know, all of those important things. Things that, hopefully, will become second-nature soon.
But when I'm spinning, I can let my mind wander. It helps pass the hour, not to mention helps me concentrate on something other than the 20+ other people in the way-too-hot room who are sweating and huffing and puffing around me.
Sometimes my wandering mind thinks about work projects, other times it focuses on something more personal. Last night, I honed in on three specific things:
1. Mt. Uncanoonuc (pictured here)
2. Devil's Hill at Newfound Lake
3. Some meanie of a hill on the Bow Road race route.
These three bumps really got the best of me last summer - bringing me through all of my gears until, faced with the only other option of toppling over in the roadway, I was forced to unclip and do the Walk of Shame to the top of the hills.
I have big plans for my riding this summer. With my first season under my belt, I hope that this summer will mean more mileage and strength - and most importantly, confidence on two wheels.
I'm certainly no die-hard rider, so there's no way I'm getting out there in the winter - slippery roads, frigid temps, road shoulders piled in snow are not for me - definitely no place for a rookie rider.
In a small attempt to keep up my riding and cross-training during the off-season, I've made my best efforts to get to spin class once a week.
My somewhat consistent attendance is starting to pay off, I think, as I pushed myself through last night's class to reach my highest resistance yet. And generally speaking, my resistance for all parts of the class is significantly higher than it used to be.
Last night, I was determined to hit the resistance goal I had in my head - and I did. Phew. It wasn't easy - but thinking of the Walk(s) of Shame and those three hills that got me last season, I was able to push the pedals a little harder than I normally would have.
My final class stats were 18.6 miles in 1:09 (the extra nine minutes coming from the pre-class warm-up) at an average 16.2 mph pace, which I was pleased with - especially given my focus on the higher resistance.
Needless to say, my legs definitely felt the burn and had that good-kind-of-ache for the rest of the night - the kind that I'm going to need to feel a lot of if I'm going to drag myself up those suckers in a few months.
(Photo credit: franklinsites.com)
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