One month from today I will be in Florence, OR and it will be the first day of the first leg of my Transamerica bicycle ride. I have been thinking about this ride for months now. My training has not been as consistent as I would like, but that is not unexpected. I am busy and have many competing demands on my time. I do my best to prioritize based on my goals, but it doesn't always work. Perhaps you can relate?
My ride in the Adirondacks last weekend (75 miles, 5000+ feet of climbing) was one of my key measurements of my readiness. I felt strong and the climbing totally doable. Yay!
My training has been composed of three very important elements: 1) Time on the bike - there is simply no way to substitute for that. However, I tried to be smart with it - not empty miles. I had a goal for every ride, whether on the trainer or on the road; 2) Strength training - I am 56 -years old and it is hard to maintain muscle mass and strength. I have to work hard to keep my muscles strong, there is no alternative! Fortunately, in my quest to begin a strength training program, I found CrossFit and an amazing community. That has made what I thought would be the hardest part of my training so much easier and fun! 3) Flexibility - hours and hours on a bike requires flexibility, especially in the low back. It also places strain on many areas, e.g. shoulders and neck. There is absolutely nothing better to prepare for this than yoga and I have practiced regularly with my riding in mind. Some of you - those who are students in my classes - have gone along with me as I have worked to find sequences and poses that help me with the flexibility and mobility I need for this adventure.
I will be doing my best to post as I deal with the logistics of getting to this epic ride and then the ride itself. I would love to hear from you. Comments of encouragement are especially welcome as I know there will be times of pain and loneliness. I am very excited and very scared about this, no question. Thanks in advance for any and all support. Onward!