In which I seriously almost quit

We borrowed a bike rack from some friends!  Which means we are now free to ride bikes in places other than those easily reachable from our home.

So we took our bikes out to Golden to scope out the course for my first triathlon!  Two weeks from yesterday.  Yikes.

The course is kind of a funny one, according to the map online.  You ride your bike out a ways to the “loop area,” then do eight loops, then ride back to where you started to hop off and run.  So, I definitely wanted to see it for myself before race day and get a better idea of how long it would take me to complete the course so I could better estimate my time and set a good goal.

We parked, unloaded our bikes, and started off.  I noticed we we started out going downhill, and thought, “Great.  A nice bike ride uphill is exactly what I want at the end, before I try and run three miles as fast as I can.”

And then we turned the corner.

Does this look like a big hill?  Because it is one.  It is an enormous, long, scary ass hill.  Forget going up it, which is doable.  Whatever, put it in a low gear, trudge up, okay. Fine.  What got me upset was how fast I got going down it.  Even riding my brakes the whole way I still felt wobbly and unsteady and like I was going to tip over and crash at any moment.  I had a hard time coming to a stop at the bottom and my bike skidded a bit as my rear wheel sort of slid out from under me. SCARY.

So, scary as hell downhill, super difficult uphill, and short blocks of flat in between.  Eight times.  Do those hills eight times, and then ride further back uphill to where you started.

My first thought was “HELL to the NO.”  I teared up.  (I am a crier.  For perspective, I also cry when facing an especially busy day at work. Or at any sad story about dogs.  Feeling overwhelmed when picking out a cell phone plan.  Every single episode of Grey’s Anatomy. Etc.)

I was just thinking, this sucks.  I don’t want to do this.  I have been looking forward to this for six months plus, but this?  Eight laps of cycling terror and agony?  No thanks. I’ll send them an email politely explaining that I signed up before the course was posted online, and now that I see it is horrible, I would please like a refund.

The point is for it to be fun, and crying about scary hills on the corner of Maple and 13th? Not fun.

So.  I had my little meltdown.  And then we figured, as long as we’d come this far, may as well check out the run route as well.  The original plan was to run the run route, but since I was mopey and the map wasn’t super clear, we just biked it instead.  More up and down hills, though not as steep.

Honestly, after checking out the bike and run routes, we were both feeling like, Screw it.  We’ll sign up for another one.  This looks like no fun at all.

But before leaving, I said we should ride the bike loop again.  And it was a little less scary since I knew what was coming.  And I went up the hill, a little easier since I knew to just put it in granny gear and not even try to maintain any sort of speed whatsoever.

And we already paid about $100 in entry fees.

So.  Once again, time to HTFU.  I tacked on ten minutes to my goal time, reminded myself that the second tri I signed up for in June looks awesome and decided I didn’t want to be a quitter.  (Though I reserve the right to leave the race a super bad review on active.com depending on the organization on race day.)

So. We’ll see. Hrmph.

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