Saturday, March 30, 2013

My First Canyon Ride

You want me to un-clip, stand on my legs AND  smile?!

"Courage is being scared to death but saddling  up anyway" ~ John Wayne

Scared to death might be an exaggeration so i will go with slight panic. After a 10 day vacation of eating and drinking I came home to the realization that I had signed up for a triathlon!! And time is evaporating!!

Even though I continued to workout during my vacation it wasn't with the same intensity or duration or..or..or...I was on vacation! Day two back into the swing of things my body is protesting!!

With that being said, when my sister told me that I needed to ride in the canyon (because ahem this race is comin up you know) I had a slight lump in my throat even though I calmly said, "Yeah sure! That sounds great!" As the words came out, my body thought "Oh sh#t! That sounds terrible!" I mean the CANYON is where the SERIOUS people ride, right?

Ok time to reset. I know that mental attitude is half the battle most of the time with almost everything. So push the reset button. I can do this.

On the day of I wake up before my alarm. I love doing new things because it sets of that excitement buzz. The fear of the unknown I guess. I text rose and confirm our time. They are in no rush. Ok gotta chill a little bit more. Play it cool. I'm ok. Reset.

Rose rides in the car with me and gives me the low down on the ride. What to look for, tricky spots, tips, insights and so on. At one point I can't really hear anymore because I just think man I love my sister so much and this is just so cool!

As we drive up Jamboree, Rose says, "I'm taking you to the other part, we usually ride up this but that would be tough" (insert laugh here). When we get to the "easy" parking spot Adam suggests that we go to the other (harder) parking spot. I'm just along for the ride, hangin with the cool kids so I'm trying to fit in. Sure, shrug whatever you guys want. Please accept me, I want to be cool!

Rose laughs and says, "Well sorry your brother in law hates you". I know he doesn't, he is trying to push me to be better. Yet this creeping voice says we DROVE up this hill and it sucked how is that going to be on a bike?!

We park and unload. I feel shaky. Adrenaline? Fear? I don't know. Reset. Reset. Reset.

As soon as I clip in the rest of the ride is surreal. The whole two hours is like a dream that I can only snatch up pieces of. Blurry in places and crystal clear in others. But here are the highlights:

1. Rose giving me safety instructions.  "Just follow me and go where I go, there are a few grates up here and we want to miss them".

2. Adam waiting for us while sprinting* back and forth across a bridge. *It was confirmed later that Adam was not actually sprinting but to me he looked super fast.

3. Going downhill at 30MPH!!!!!!!!!!! That was the BEST! After some brake instruction from Rosé and Adam we took off and I was hauling! Peddling faster and faster and fast and then the hill took a really good incline and all of a sudden I thought,"uh oh I haven't braked at all!" I'm going 30 like really flying! Adrenaline kicks in! My mind goes into skydiving mode where every second ticks slower than usual and you can see in slow motion. Oh there is a rock there, a crack here, move right, move left...and then my heart sings THIS IS HOW BIRDS FEEL!!  Then I hear Roses voice, "YEAH BUDDY!!!!!"  And we are soaring!

4. Sharing a snack with Rose. Honestly I would have forgotten to eat all otherwise.

5. The love and respect between Adam and Rose. If you have been in their presence you see it, you feel it and its beautiful.

6.  The raw beauty of nature. Rose kept shouting out, "Isn't it beautiful?!" And it was. It reminded me of when we used to hike up in turtle rock before it was turtle rock and every time was like being transported to a different place. The canyon was no different. Sunny, misty, magical. Time had no relevancy. We were just there..climbing, breathing, laughing and climbing again.

I have heard Rose say and if you have read her blogs you know, the whole triathlon training isn't about the race itself. It's so so so much bigger. It's all these demons we battle and baggage we carry. It's fear, joy, love, every emotion imaginable wrapped up in a little ball. It's strength, passion, glory. It's life. And now I get it.


  1. I love you so much and I can't say enough how happy I am that you had this much fun! See you tomorrow for your first ocean swim! HAHAH!