Sunday, November 11, 2007

The Official Sweep

Someone's gotta come in last right? I've realized that my position as sweep for the Frigid Bits races has become official. I take my job as sweep very seriously. Don't want to leave anyone out on the trails right?

To be honest, I really don't have a chance. While I love to ride and am in good shape, I'm riding against men and an occasional woman who ride almost every day. Commuting to work has help me move up close behind the pack, but I am still just that.. behind the pack. At the start of this race I very quickly was behind. There was a pack of about 12 people, and then there was me about 50 yards behind. By the time we were a quarter mile into the race, I was alone. I passed a man and woman walking their dog on the trail and they said, laughing, "Are you the chase pack?" Ha. Ha.

And that's okay. I love to just get out and ride, and I am quickly discovering riding in the winter is pretty amazing. But two other things are holding me back from being a cycling enthusiast. Running. Ice climbing. Oh yeah... and I have a job too. This is what I'm focusing on right now. And I will be for most of the winter. I plan on biking and skiing to cross train and to exercise my dog, but as far as winning any races anytime soon, it's not gonna happen. And it's kinda nice being out there all by yourself in the snow at night.

This race was called "Find Uranus". For those of you who don't live in Anchorage, I'll explain. The Coastal Trail, obviously runs along the "coast" of Anchorage. Along the trail there is some sort of planet walk going on. Anyway, information about all of the planets are spaced out along the miles of the trail. So we started the race at Goose Lake, rode to the Coastal trail, found Uranus and back to Goose Lake. About 14 miles.

The trail had been dusted with snow and was slushy in places. The ride back was around 8pm so the snow had crusted up a bit. I thought I would cruise back on the Chester Creek Trail, but it is a slight uphill the whole way and the new crust was slowing me down. I had run for an hour in the morning and only ate one meal. Needless to say I bonked. It was only 14 miles, I ride that commuting to work, but all of these other factors contributed to me not feeling well at the end. And so I rode into the finish line, brining up the rear, to the other racers already on their second or third beer and surprised to see that someone was still out there.

This scene is becoming all too familiar to me...


Anonymous said...

Julie, you are still a bad ass!

Jill said...

Ah, yes, the sweeper for the boys. I know that role all too well.

Considering that Carlos has yet to talk many other women into participating in Frigid Bits, and I feel pretty confident that he tries his best, is a testiment to how "bad ass" you are. Nice job!

Julie Perilla said...

Sometimes I feel like a "bad ass" and sometimes I feel like a big baby. But I suppose feeling like a bad ass all the time would not be as satisfying.