What time is it? It’s bi-annual bike ride time! One of the, on average, two times a year I get on a bike and ride around town like a crazy person who actually knows how to cycle.
In theory, I’ve got the skill set: I’m in pretty decent shape, I’ve got some endurance built up and my legs are pretty tough. Lest we forget the piles of J’s family’s hand-me-downs (which are still worth more than anything I could ever afford) that make me look halfway legit. But for whatever reason, I just cannot garner a passion for the sport. I’m pretty sure its the uncomfortable seat (sorry, SADDLE) that no matter how padded and gel-packed my diaper shorts are, never fails to make it difficult to sit down for at least two days.
Point is, last weekend was Tour De Rocky Top time – the annual cycling event in Knoxville that ends with free beer and pizza (what I’m there for) and a viewing party for the start of the Tour De France (what most everyone else is there for). Last year, me and my future mother-in-law got a little bit lost and ended up about 23 miles over our originally planned 32 mile route. Not one of our finest moments.
Needless to say, I was a bit hesitant to sign up this year without reliable Global Positioning System, a map taped to my handle bars, and maybe a compass for good measure. But sign up I did and I even managed coerce two newbie biker friends to accompany me with talk of free post race beer and pizza. Ha! Suckers.
So it was us three for the 32 mile ride and we actually started off just fine. Until we got lost a mile and half in. Seriously. Up a Mount Everest-eque hill (I’m not even being a little dramatic…) to find some poor man chasing after us informing us we were going the wrong way. Thank you kind sir, we were just looking to get in a few extra miles and build up our big muscles, that’s all.
Here are some pics taken by the lovely Angie (the same sister who paparazzied A and I during the Secret City Half Marathon) that really exhibit how skilled and professional we are:
Once back on track, it was smooth sailing. 30 some miles of gorgeous scenery and good company. We ended up doing 33.96 miles in 3:34. Pretty laughable by any actual cyclists standards (especially the dozen or so that lapped us coming in from the 50 mile route) but I was pleased as punch that we all managed to finish together in one piece, uninjured and still able to walk.
And sure my ass still hurts, but the few things taste as good as a really cold beer after a 3 and a half hours on a bike.
Cheers to that.