Sunday, 11 November 2012

More catching up

In some ways I'd prefer to forget about most of the last 10 days from a Tuna To Tri perspective.  Last weekend, I just couldn't get out of bed and for only the third weekend this year, I went without any sport at all.  In fairness, Sunday was truly horrible weather-wise with torrential rain, so I shouldn't feel too bad for staying home (the tri club ride was cancelled, but I could have gone for a swim).   I also missed two days from swimming this week because of just feeling dreadful.

Things picked up yesterday when I went for my Tridynamic/Swim for Tri winter workshop which I'll blog about soon (when hopefully I may have some photos to share with you).  I'd been out for a run in the morning which had been painful, but actually not too far off my usual pace, and although they were somewhat delayed I got some endorphins, which were further boosted in the afternoon. 

Sadly, the tuna was well out of super-tuna-ess today.  I didn't feel tired this morning when I got up, and my mood was reasonable, so I thought I was all set for an ok bike ride.  Mr Tuna decided to stay home so I set off and got to the meeting point in plenty of time and although cold it was beautifully sunny.  Unfortunately it all went down from there.  We set out to go across the city, and had to take a slightly odd route due to the Remembrance Sunday activities which meant lots of junctions, lots of traffic lights, and meant that I got left behind quite a few times because of trying to clip in.  We then stopped so that one rider could get some oil; I carried on because I knew there was a long hill ahead and I wanted to get a headstart.  I made it up!  And the group caught up with me just as I got to the top.  We stopped briefly, and then there was another junction.  The group got away and for 3 or 4 miles I cycled behind, struggling to catch up with them (and failing)...they weren't getting further away really but I just couldn't bridge the gap.  At this point I was ready to call it a day as I was obviously holding everyone up, and the ride leader seemed keen for me to do so too and started talking to one of the others to ask him to take me back (from where we were, I could have got back on my own).  One of the ladies asked me if I was ok, and I shook my head and burst into tears because I'd found it so miserable struggling to catch up.  The ride leader insisted that I had been fine on the first ride so why was I struggling now?  (Because they were going a small but significant 1 mph faster...).  After bursting into tears, the ladies were keen to include me and keep going, so for another 10 miles or so, I had company, but was forced to go faster than I felt comofrtable cycling for the distance, which meant that after that, my legs were tired and spent.  I just couldn't keep up.  Having another club member shout things like "close the gap" and "use your gears", really didn't help.  No idea how he thought I could close the gap or what I was expected to do with my gears.  The group got further and further ahead, and the more experienced riders who were sort of acting as sweepers were engrossed in conversation leaving me and one lady behind.  Eventually I had to say that I needed a stop.  She said that she didn't mind cycling slowly, but I felt so bad that I was holding her, and everyone else up so I said to her to go and catch the group up and I would make my own way home, especially as I knew there was a long downhill stretch ahead.  I had a little sit down for a couple of minutes and then rang Mr Tuna to ask him to start cycling to where I was so that we could meet halfwayish and I'll have some company for the last 2-3 miles.  Plodded onwards and eventually saw Mr Tuna.  Had another good cry at the side of the road and then we got home.  I did later discover that

I'm not quite sure where I go from here. I certainly don't have the confidence to go out with the group again now.   I posted about this on facebook just for some support from my friends and a former band friend has invited me to go out with his cycling club's "taster" ride on the 24th, so that is something.   I don't feel confident enough to go on my own as nervous in traffic, feel that there is solidarity in numbers, and just can't change a tyre yet,  and can't always ask Mr Tuna to take me out as he needs to do his own thing too.



  1. So sorry to hear about this, Verity. :( Do you have a stationary bike trainer? It won't be exactly the same as riding on the road, but at least you can practice going faster and building up your endurance. I don't mind riding alone, but I do prefer to cycle with others if I can; maybe try to find one or two other people who would join you? I would think going with one or two others would be less stressful than riding in a larger group. You could also look into getting a coach or one-on-one lessons.

  2. Again, I was so sorry to hear about this and know from experience how horrible it is to be at the back trying so hard but never managing to catch up.

    I am sure your extended network must know someone in the area who could ride with you. I have triathlon friends in Northampton and Kent, which doesn't help much. I also think going with a smaller group might be better for now. I wonder if you could take on that suggestion people made to me about my running and recruit a group of "slower" people to work with for a bit.

    I will say it again, too: I am in awe of your sporting exploits, fitness and dedication. I don't care if you can't keep up with some random people: you are still a heroine in my book.

    Liz xx