I did so well last week with my whole “trying to be less fat” thing. I rode my bike 5 out of 7 days and rode my horse 4 out of 7. So naturally on Friday night when we had our Old Horse Friends Happy Hour I ate like a freaking pig. In my defense we decided this was my pre-birthday celebration and therefore we should order the Pazookie Party Platter. Let me show you what this looks like.
Basically we all got The Diabeetus and gained 5lbs in the process. Worth it. (Side note: my friend K who took this picture just started her own blog! Everyone should follow her, she’s cool and smart and has cute animals.)
On Saturday I was up early to go ride Henry. He was a little wild, which with him comes out as silly spookiness, so we did some snorting at random things and trotting sideways because the sandbags that are always sitting by the rail were STILL SITTING BY THE RAIL. Terrifying. But he settled fine once he got his sillies out and as usual left me giggling at his antics.
After I got home from the barn I had the bright idea that I should ride my bike over to visit my mom in one of Austin’s suburbs… cuz ya know… major day-after guilt from The Party Platter Diabeetus Incident. It really isn’t a bad journey, only about 19 miles round trip, and no major hills or bad traffic to negotiate. What I was failing to take into account is that it was 101 freakin degrees. I opted to wear a Kastel shirt instead of a regular bike jersey to keep the sun off my arms, but again failed to take into account that I wasn’t wearing gloves. Guess who has a super sexy hand sunburn? Guess who just about died of heat stroke by the time she got home? Total idiot. I will say though, that Kastel felt a million times better than my regular jerseys.
Sunday morning I was once again up bright and early (feeling like a tired sack of dog crap) for cyclocross practice. We did a warm-up ride through the park – aka by the time we were done with the warm-up sweat was rolling down my legs and face like someone had turned on a faucet – then proceeded to practice sprint starts 9,000 times. This could be a slight exaggeration, but not much. It was hell. Then we practiced barriers and run-ups, which I can only explain to you as a lot of running and carrying and other awful things like that. By the time we were done I was completely out of gas and really hot. So off I went for a lesson on Henry because as we’ve already discovered, I’m a total idiot.
Trainer had set up an exercise in the center of the ring that basically made a crap ton of turns and necessitated a steady collected pace and deeper distance if you wanted to succeed. Great… the exact things that take a lot of work for me, since I wasn’t already beat to shit. Note heavy sarcasm.
We went through the exercise a couple times with the jumps tiny, then put them up a little bit and did it a couple more times. When I actually sat up and rode and had a plan it worked out pretty well. I wish I could sit here and tell you that I sat up and rode and had a plan more often than not, but meh… 50/50. The fact that I was still on the horse by this point was kind of miraculous.
Then we added more jumps after the zig zag exercise. An outside line that rode in a short six, across the diagonal over what was also jump 4, to the other outside line also in a short six. They were set short enough to where if you jumped in from a gap or with much of a bold pace, it was a 5. Guess what I did the first time? Womp womp.
The second time was better, I actually rode to the deep one with a collected canter and the six worked out on both lines but I still felt like I was crooked and reacting instead of creating. At this point Trainer asked me if I was okay (pretty sure my face was past the color of a tomato) to which I replied “No, I’m about to fucking die. Let’s do it again.”. I really wanted to get it right.
Halfway through the last attempt I was starting to get dizzy but I managed to finish and it wasn’t awful. Still not really what I’d call great but passable. Henry and I were both cooked by then so we called it a day. My quads were quivering when I got off and I had to hose myself down in the washrack a couple times. Completely overdo yourself in one weekend? Yes please!
Video of the last part of the last attempt – best on full screen since it’s little. Also turn the sound on for Trainer’s glowing praise of “Alright… that was better” at the end. Hilarious. Poor guy, sometimes it really must be a struggle to be positive.