Sunday, June 5, 2011

Tri Season and Eugene Bike Exaggerations

For the record... I have applied to get into a certain race under a certain category that I might or might not qualify for, depending on the race organizer's definition of my job and whether all my time in BDUs and boots (or scrubs, or bike gear and bulletproof, or business casual and funny purple latex-free gloves, depending on the day) is the same as mine.  More to come.  If I get in, it'll be awesome.

In the meantime, I have been riding around Eugene.

Eugene is really awesome.  It's sort of like a biker chick's dream town to live in.  Do they make heart-Oregon stickers for my bike, too?  However, among other things, I have learned that Eugene might have a fibbing problem when it comes to bikes.

It started with stuff like my normally sweet and innocent parishioners saying things like, "Oh, I'm just a casual around town rider".  And then you find they are super-commuters who are so tough that rain itself stops in their general vicinity and yields the bike lane to their awesome commuter super-powers.  Or the one who said "Oh, I have a few tools and I like to tinker" and proceeded to give my road bike the best damn tune up it's ever had in its short life.  (That bike is riding AWESOME right now!)  

The other day, I took M out to a ride on the famous River Bike Bath.  It borders the Willamette River and goes right by McMenamins, which is now dear to me for introducing me to my new favorite junk food- cajunized tator tots.

Several people have told me that the River Path is 20 miles.  We rode it end to end, and barely scraped up 11 miles.  That was a rather infamous ride, as M took off on a little speed-demon trip to show me how fast he was.  Sadly, he missed a crucial turn and we got separated and mildly lost and by the time we found each other and our car, I had gotten seriously rained on.  Plus I was worried about my missing beloved.  And really, really cheezed off that he'd ditched me.  Ahem.  Wives are pretty much on par with cats when they are both wet and mad.  Somehow, I think he'll be developing his "looking behind him" skills a lot.

Also- there's a hill nearby my house called Green Hill.  I was told it was "500, maybe 600 meters of a nice rolling climb.  There's a few flattish spots to catch your breath."  I wonder if the guy knew he was lying to a priest?

Because Green Hill feels like about 12 miles of straight uphill, 80% grade.  There's a few flattish spots where I can catch my breath indeed- it's pretty flat once you give into to the shaking legs and clip desperately out of your pedals and lie on the side of the road for a minute, heaving precious molecules of oxygen into your deprived body, which is busy screaming "Why, why, you witch, why?"

However, I must say that on the other side of Green Hill, there's the most awesome screaming descent.  I broke 40mph, despite holding my brakes most of the time.  M has the most bizarre ideas about "safety" and stuff.  Secretly, I want to try going all out sometime to see just how fast I can go.

In the meantime, I tell you, I better have the most awesome quads in the world by the end of this summer.  Because WOW, these hills are kicking my squashy East Coast heiny!  Is there some reason I haven't magically become super skinny since moving here?  My legs are slowly turning into steel, but I should be much skinnier, kind of like I was when I lived in VA.  It can't have anything to do with the many fabulous people who give me cake each week, can it?  Oh, new job, you people celebrate so many wonderful things with such amazing cake.  And pie.

And tater tots!

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