There was a clearing in the weather system and the sun came out on Saturday morning. Mike and I jumped at the chance at getting my first ride done in dry weather. “Let go to the parking lot for quick clip in & clip out lesson” he suggested. My god, what a gong show! Round and round the parking lot I went trying to clip out. “I got…I got…ohhhhh shit” I laughed as I tumbled over, my feet still clipped in, my bike over top on me as I lay on the pavement. “It happens to everyone; especially when it’s your first day out. Now that you’ve gone down it probably won’t happen again.” Mike tried to re-assure me. I got back up and rode around some more… and I fell again and again and yup… AGAIN. It was actually quite comical. “Ok I think I got it, let go for a real ride now.” I said.
We headed towards the seawall, which was crowded with people strolling with their morning coffees, walking their dogs and jogging. We were going slowly, which gave me the opportunity to get comfortable on the bike and practice clipping in and out some more.
As we approached Stanley Park Mike said “You can ride as fast as you want now, we’re staying on the road!” I spent the first lap of the park trying to get used to being on the bike, figuring out which position was most comfortable. As we approached the park’s hill (my BMO half marathon nemesis) Mike suggested I change gears. “Nah… maybe later” I answered pushing through as is. As we reached the top my legs were burning and I had visions of the Richter Pass; the never ending climb on the IronMan Canada course; I shook the thoughts away “Months and months away …” I reminded myself.
When we got at the bottom of the hill Mike looked at me. “That was 10 km, are you good to go around again?” I looked at him “Yup, we’re doing 50 km today.”
By the fourth lap of the park I’d figured out my gears and the bike was feeling like an extension of my body. I went flying down the hill taking the turn at 52 km/hr. “I love it! I love it! I love it!!”
The last time up the hill my legs were tired, it was definitely my slowest climb. As we finished the fifth lap we decided to head back to the seawall towards Yaletown; everything was going perfectly. I had managed to clip out in two emergency situations in the park, I’d mastered my gears and rode well over 50 km my first time out. I must have been day dreaming or maybe I just got cocky as I flew down the path and took the turn way too wide. All of a sudden I found myself staring right into the eyes of another cyclist. I froze “Oh shit!!! I can’t clip out!” I yelled and threw my bike into the bushes to avoid a head on collision.
The guy was nice and helped me up. “New rider?” he smiled. “Yes…” I blushed.
Mike came back for me. “I saw you take that turn, looked back and all of a sudden you were gone!” he said laughing. What an awesome finish to a great first ride
The next day I woke up with a few scrapes and bruises but besides that absolutely no pain! I can’t wait to for my next ride.
PT Girl xo