7.21.2015

Pierre's Hole Practice Loop OR 30 Miles of Self-Inflicted Torture

At the top of the world! // Wildflowers!  The hills are alive, with the sound of music. // Looking awkward as ever on a bike. // Our motley bike riding crew on Saturday.


Bron has this hobby that he's gotten really into.  It's called mountain biking.  He's about obsessed with it as I am about photography.  However, over the last year or so, he's pulled me into it as well.  Warning: once the bug bites, it bites HARD!  Admittedly, I love mountain biking too!  It's become a hobby that Bron and I can enjoy together.  It's a great excuse to be outside, get some exercise, and become somewhat of a pair of adrenaline junkies all at the same time.

Last year, Bron raced 50km (approximately 31 miles) around Grand Targhee for a race called Pierre's Hole.  So naturally, Bron is doing the 100km race this year and I am doing the 50km.  (Say what?!?  We're crazy!  I already know.)

Saturday we clambered into a suburban with three other friends at 5:00AM in the morning to travel to the majestic Tetons for a practice ride of the race.  It was overcast and cool and an absolutely perfect day to ride.  And I am proud to declare that I OWNED that first climb!  The guys had me all psyched out about it.  Turns out, our local ride Wednesday night was much more intense.  Whew!  And then the downhill from the top was a total kick in the pants.  Even with the switchbacks, it was a blast!  Plus, did I mention the fields and fields of wildflowers?  Gorgeous!  Eye candy for the soul. 

But that's about where the fun ended for me.  At about mile 20 my tank was empty.  I spent approximately the last ten miles of our ride toggling between falling asleep in the saddle and silently coming up with words to describe my self-inflicted misery.  When we finally made it back to the parking lot, the guys congratulated me on finishing, but all I could do was nod and say I felt like crying.  And I did!  Bron pulled me into a big hug and let the tears come.

Ooh, I have never felt so raw and absolutely drained in my entire life.  But I am glad I did it.  I DID IT!  I am happy my coaches Bron and Nick cheered me on.  Race day won't feel quite so intimidating.  I have come such a long ways.  Just after my miscarriage three months ago, a silly little 8 mile ride wiped me out for three days!  Now I'm keeping up with the big boys.  It really is something of which I'm very proud.  I've earned my right to be on that mountain.  It feels good to overcome and conquer.

We'll be back in one month, Pierre's Hole!


P.S.  Below is a mountain biking parody that hits what it's like to be a mountain biker right on the nose.  We all laughed out loud on the mountain Saturday when I said, "Hey, look at that tree!"  It's so, so, sadly true.              

5 comments:

  1. You go girl! I love that you push yourself. I've always enjoyed biking but never put the time or effort into it. Kyle has gotten into mountain biking and wants to take me along. I think it sounds fun. Kyle noticed your bike has dual suspension. How do you like it?

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    1. You totally should get into mountain biking! I could sure use a girlfriend up there. I went from a hard tail to this bike and all I can tell you is that the difference is like a dream. It's a niiiice bike. I don't think I use her to the full extent she was intended for! The first time I hopped on I was suddenly able to conquer everything from big dips to boulders, etc. without hesitation. Just the difference in shifting made me excited. Bron and everyone else he rides with have dual suspension as well. Totally worth it in our experience.

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    2. Awesome. Thank you! I think Kyle is just dying to get me out there with him. It may not be until next spring that I can really get away for a bit, but at least it gives us the off season to shop for a good sale. :) If I can get myself in shape, maybe we'll have to meet up sometime for a ride. That'd be so fun!

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  2. First of all, CONGRATULATIONS! I don't think I've ever rode more than 7 miles in my entire life and that was on a plain, flat surface. Secondly, I laughed so hard watching that video. It's you! Didn't you guys practically teach your children to ride bikes before they could walk (kind of), and don't you have a GoPro? I must say that mountain biking really seems like a cool sport. I have no doubt that your blog will be filled with many, many mountain biking adventures. You rock!

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  3. It is so beautiful, and I know you are going to be ready in a few weeks for the big event. Cant wait to see photos and hear all about it.

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