Posted by: forgingahead | June 13, 2008

Bricking It

John has done some serious triathlon training. You know, where the athlete tracks their time and tries to shave off minutes. Not really my approach for this first time event but I can certainly see the value.

When I shared my story about swimming with Morgan, John responded with his trademark encouragement and an invite to do a training brick near his home in Pt. Reyes. Oh goody, another chance to swim in cold water! A chance to get right on the bike after a swim. And someone to lead the way so Hubby and I aren’t left discussing which way to go.

We jumped at the opportunity.

I can definitely recommend a sunrise swim in Tomales Bay – even when the water is a mere 57 degrees. The three cap trick that Morgan Filler taught me combined with the wet suit made it nearly painless. And I was prepared for the effect of the cold on my face and breath. So the thing to know about Tomales Bay is it’s shallow and there are long weedy things that make you feel like you’re re-enacting an Ophelia scene from Hamlet. That’s the fun of these adventures though, each one is unique.

We got out of the water, peeled off our wet suits, and John took off at a jog back to the car which was parked a hundred feet away. That’s where the quickness of the transition ended thanks to me. I utilized the outhouse, changed my clothes, ate a banana, hemmed and hawed about my how much cytomax to put in my water bottle. John’s much too polite to shake his head but I can imagine a few thoughts running through his mind.

So onto the bikes about 20 minutes later and I’m psyched to say that I still have some adrenaline high from the swim. That lasts for about 10 minutes when we’re STILL climbing a hill that John said was “kinda long.” Master of understatement. Certainly the biggest hill this novice cyclist has encountered in her dozen or so bike rides. I guess with all the talking I’ve been doing about tri-training that John assumed I’d done some hills.

I did, however, ALMOST make it to the top where Hubby and John were patiently circling around. Walked the last 50 feet and was very glad to enjoy a long downhill from there. I think if I train more I could really warm up to being a hill rider. They’re fun (says the girl who’s had a week to recover from said ride and now views the event through a filter of rose colored glasses.)

Sir Frances Drake out to the Pt. Reyes Lighthouse is a lovely ride. Very little car traffic, rolling hills, lovely sea breeze. I’ve discovered that I’m slow. Up the hill, spin spin spin. Slow. Down the hill – fast. Up the next hill, slower. About the 10th hill we approached I was just taking a big mental sigh when John asked how I was doing. “Well, how many more hills are there,” I asked. “This one and then a bigger one,” he replied.

This one looked pretty massive to me so I took stock of my body and decided to turn around. Learning what my body can do, how much fuel it needs, what its limitations are and how far I can push it is an aspect to this training that I really enjoy.

Hubby and John made the whole ride to the point and back. And I enjoyed my solo ride back. When the going got tough I sang “the wheels on the bus go round and round” to myself, which oddly enough helps keep me going. Hey, whatever works.



  1. Welcome back and congrats on this accomplishment. It’s inspiring, entertaining and informative to read about your progress. Hope to see you soon g’friend!

  2. […] his comparison is a year and a half ago in June 2008 when John invited us up to Pt. Reyes do a training brick for our Santa Barbara […]

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