Monday, May 26, 2008

Taking her out for her first ride...

So yesterday I killed two birds with one stone - taking the new bike out for the first time AND getting in my first open water swim of the year.

The coach for the ISU tri club also coaches the TRI Racers in Ankeny and he was organizing an open water swim clinic. The plan was to meet at the Ankeny Y and ride the 13 miles to the lake, swim, and then ride back.

I ended up going down with two other grad students in the tri club - the totally weird thing is that one of them is another PhD student in my department and has been for two years and I totally didn't know him at all. I talk to random people all the time and there are not a ton of PhD students in my department, so this just perplexes me that we haven't met before.

As evidence of my talking to random people, I knew the other grad student from... the bus. Yes, I'm that girl on the bus who will talk to you when all you want to do is stare out the window. In randomness, we have led oddly parallel lives - we're both East Coasters, went to all girls Catholic schools of the Ursuline variety, did the Ivy League thing, then somehow ended up in Iowa for our PhDs, and both study water. Seriously.

Anyway, back to training. So we showed up at the Ankeny Y and about 5 people said "that's a nice bike." Which, of course, made me feel like I needed to represent. Gees, you can't be slow on a nice bike! This is a lot of pressure people! Nobody expected anything out of Pepe Le Tour!

But let me tell you. She rides nice. I can feel the difference that the tri bike angles make. I feel like my hip flexors are working a lot less and that it is easier to do nice full circular leg strokes. Also, have I mentioned how comfortable it is to stay in aero? Well, except for when we had that bitch of a crosswind - I thought I was going to get blown over. But straight into the wind, I felt like there was a definite advantage as well. Or maybe I am just making that all up in my head so I feel better about shelling out almost a month's salary on a bike.

Now the OWS... We actually had a really hot day yesterday. But it hasn't been warm in general. So that lake was chilly! My lake in Ames is about 66 at the surface, so this probably wasn't too far off. Most people had wetsuits. I have not made this purchase yet and I am not sure if I ever will. It seems like I would be paying for the humiliation and torture of squeezing myself into neoprene.

A secondary reason why I am avoiding the wetsuit is that I am afraid that I might feel the need to strike a pose like these people.

I procrastinated getting in the water for a long long time. But I finally just jumped in and dodged around floating goose poop and started swimming. The strong winds across the lake made it very choppy and I probably have E. coli now from the large quantities of lake water I swallowed.

I totally needed this though. I have done almost zero non-running training since Siouxperman. And Lake Geode is coming up on July 12th! I need to get back on the bike and in the water. Oh and I met a fellow blogger, who is with the TRI Racers. Yay for bloggy meetups!

But I was unsuccessful in my secondary goal of trying to snag more runners for the relay. I actually talked to several people who were interested, but were either running injured (they could bike and swim but couldn't run) or were busy that weekend (how come the whole world is getting married that weekend?!)

How come the last two people are always the hardest to find?

Oh yeah, I was successful in getting a tri top tramp stamp though...


Wendy said...

Sounds like a great day (except for the goose poop!).

I confess, I can't hop into water that temperature. I have to ease in. You're a braver person than I!

jeanne said...

you did it!!! and yes braver than me. (btw, i didn't buy the wetsuit, i rented it for $35.)

damn, that's cold water. other than the goose poop, how was it?

and you rode there and back?! Awesomeness.

Audrey said...

dude, you're a serious triathlete now!! you need a wetsuit!!!

are you on your school's tri team?!?!?! we could be competitors at collegiate nationals (April)!! :)

Lisa said...

1. I totally wish I had your abilities to strike up conversations with random strangers on the bus.

2. I feel like, for all the random people who you've met on the bus and turned out to have a shitload in common with, you could write a book. -- Or at least tell a good story on "This American Life."

3. when wearing a wetsuit like that, you MUST pose like that!

Coach Tammy said...

Woohoo!! Congrats on your excellent purchase. She's perty!

BTW, I have a wetsuit, and I don't think I ever felt the need to strike a pose in it. Mostly I just feel the need to get in the water as soon as possible so that no one sees the bulges in the wrong places ;)

Rainmaker said...

Awesome - it's amazing how a new bike can feel sometimes.

tribeaner said...

You're gonna love your new ride...I have the same bike. AND it's super easy to find in transition, thanks to the pretty sky blue color. :) ENJOY!

Nitmos said...

Now is the time on Sprockets when we dance.

blink140pnt6 said...

Sweet new bike! glad they threw the nut in for free. That made me laugh.

What race are trying to snag runners for?

Borsch said...

The new bike looks great and it sounds like you are well on your way to getting into tri shape.

Steve Stenzel said...

Seriously, what is that guy on the end pointing at?!?