My profession rarely allows me to actually enjoy a long holiday weekend. Last year we were given 4 holiday: Christmas (day only), Thanksgiving (day only), New Years (day only) and July 4th. That's it! Not Memorial day, labor day, flag day, Christmas Eve, Presidents day, etc. etc. etc. If it wasn't one of those days, we'd better be billing someone for something. Silly legal world!
But this July 4th I actually get to enjoy the holiday with the rest of the country. Hey, I guess there is a positive to every situation ;) Triathletes typically take the opportunity to add in another long day of training on these long weekends, while I sit in an office in a state of extreme jealousy.
Today I could go out and enjoy a long 3 day weekend and celebrate our country's independence in whatever way I desired! Of course, my desire was to train, and there were man options. Option 1) a short ride with a friend of mine tapering for an upcoming race; Option 2) Celo Pacific group ride leaving from Carlsbad; Option 3) Century ride with some friend training for IM Canada.
Option 2 was looking like the winner until I realized I would either have to ride 115 or drive my bike up to Carlsbad. I hate driving my bike. I'd rather ride 2 extra hours then drive my bike somewhere. The other factor was traffic. Beach traffic is RIDICULOUS during the 4th of July wknd. All of a sudden option 3 seemed to win out. (It was hard to pass up an opportunity to ride with my friends Beth and James, but we'll make up for it with a great ride in the mountains next week!!)
Amanda and Paula are training for Ironman Canada, and are getting strong.
After a quick change in plans at 6:30a.m. I decided I'd head to the top of the long climb half way through the ride (Lake Wulford) and then turn back for home. I knew it would be hard to do because the second half of that ride is so beautiful and fun. Just before we started up into the mountains I wondered if I would really be able to turn back. Turning back would put me around 60miles, continuing on would make for a 100mile day.
Once at the top of the hill shown in this picture I couldn't turn back. The fun had just begun. My legs were feeling much better than the days prior. So, I made a compromise with myself. I could do the full ride as long as I did a solid 20minute ice bath after. In a caravan of Cervelo bikes, we rode on.
As we headed into the wonderful headwind found on the 76 bike path (a long bike path that leads back to the coast) a group of guys came up from behind. It was the group ride I debated riding with. And there was James! Sadly, no Beth. I quickly jumped on with the group, and hoped Amanda and Paula joined suit. I guess I'm becoming well trained this summer. When fast guys go by, I jump on and hold on :)
Even though we had to dodge the coastal holiday traffic for the final 15 miles, it was an awesome start to the holiday weekend. I could actually enjoy a real holiday weekend without the work stress and without a single visit to the office. 101 miles of fun and laughter with the girls (clearly I'm the giant of this group! My bike shorts end at their hips!).
Ohhhhh, and yes that is diet coke in the water bottle. I didn't really bring nutrition for 100 miles, so I took the opportunity to buy a PayDay bar at the half way point and diet coke for the final 20 miles =)
Then off to Carlsbad's concert in the park with Kristin and Kelly.
Here's to all the men and women overseas that continue to fight for our freedom! Thank you is never enough!! While we celebrate a long weekend with training, time at the beach, and fireworks, lets remember all our military does to enable us to enjoy these freedoms. The demands of their job is non-stop, and rarely do they get a single day off, let alone a long weekend!!!