Anyway, we were super lucky, because Runner Maybe Jen was kind enough to gift her admission to Alli for her 14th birthday last month. I was willing to spring for my own entry fee, haha. *After* I registered, I balked at the 6:45 a.m. (IN THE MORNING!) start time on a Sunday (otherwise known as Mad Men Morning, when I lay in bed and watch the two Mad Men reruns aired on A&E. Even though I have seen them before. Don't judge.)
Well. Saturday started out nice, and Mr. W and my buddy T and I went for a bike ride. Lucky us, we finished our 28-ish miles JUST as the skies opened up with a rainy fury. (Fury would not be expressed in heat, in my book, anyway, because being warm is nice. Being cold and wet is baaaaaad.)*
*Sidebar: I once played a game on a radio call-in show. Offline, before I started, as part of the deal, win or lose, the DJ told me that after the game, he would ask me how I felt and I had to say, "I'm so happy I could baaaaaaaaa like a sheep!" I did. :) Plus, I won $150 in gift certificates to Fred Meyer's (non-Northwesterners, think Target.) I think of this whenever I type baaaaaaad, which is more often than you would think.
Oh! Let me derail this little thought train and tell you about the moment I realized Mr. W is not, in fact, wonderful, but evil! Well, maybe not evil. But do you want to know how the geek engineer science brain can get you in trouble with your girlfriend? Let me tell you.
I live near a rather steep hill. If I tell you that it is 16% grade, that might not mean much to you. I don't fully understand it myself. (I always ask myself if 100% grade is then straight up and down. So wouldn't a 45 degree angle be 50% grade? I don't think so.) So I'll put this picture here and even though you can't see the hill, really, you can see the disappointed look on the cyclist's face, sorta:
|Really steep. Not all the way, but most way.|
View Larger Map
(if you see the little white arrows on the screen, you can actually navigate up my steep hill!)
Here's a page that sort of explains it, but more importantly talks about "rise over run times 100" which reminds me of something I learned in school. And nope, it says a 45 degree angle is the equivalent of a 100% grade because rise = run.
Anyway. I live near a very steep hill. I have not been able to ride a bike up this hill, it is so steep. The first time I *almost* rode my bike up this hill, minus the very steep part at the bottom, I had my neighbor take this picture to celebrate. Now, because I did not actually ride my bike up the hill, I think my standards for myself are pretty lax, haha.
Steep hill. I hadn't actually tried riding it on my racy new bike (that's my old cruiser style bike), because I was so sure I couldn't get up it, I just didn't try. Well! On Saturday at the end of our ride, I suggested we climb this hill, which is the shortest, but steepest, way home. Mr. W had mentioned he'd like to ride it one day, anyway.
I went into it sure that I'd need to *gasp* get off and push the bike. Even though I just said in my last entry, "Bikes are for riding, not pushing!" (I am nothing if not hypocritical, haha.) But, you know what? I didn't! I was slow, and the riding was hard, but me no pushy. Success! I would have had Mr. W take an updated bike lifting shot, but...
Seriously - as I'm whooping and hollering going up this hill, totally invigorated by my success, Mr. W, who also chugged straight up the hill, much faster and stronger than me, said, "You've got a real gear advantage over me with your bike..." I don't remember what else, if anything, he said, because all the triumphant bike dominator blood turned into roiling angry blood pounding in my ears.
Seriously. I just made a major milestone for me. OMG. Tell me how trivial my success was, please. My bike has a granny gear and yours doesn't? Well, thankyouverymuch, I don't care. Which I told him. When I am riding, or running, I compete against me. Just me! Well, me and Strava, but that's just a formalized way of competing against me. I told him that the science of our bikes doesn't interest me ONE WHIT while I am actively IN THE MOMENT of celebrating what I consider a major win.
Geek. Just absolutely could not suppress the thought that my three-little-gear-wheel bike has an advantage over his two-little-gear-wheel bike. The science must be shared, even while his not-at-all scientific girlfriend is still WHOOPING LOUDLY up the hill. Sigh.
It was not meant to be mean, but it was mean. Likewise, our fellow riding friend who called me out on facebook for missing recent Wednesday night rides and then pooh-poohed me for saying the weather has been too bad for me to want to ride. I told Mr. W that if biking begins to feel like an obligation, I already have plenty of obligations, and if it ceases to be fun to ride with them, I can go back to riding by myself.
|He's not mean, he's just (book)smart.|
Anyway, shortly after that, the skies opened up with heavy rains. I dreaded the early start time for the 5K, afraid it would still be raining. I told myself, "You will not bail." I told myself Alli loves the super cute sweatshirts that came with the entries, and that there is great pride in being able to wear them, but not if you bailed on the event (even if it was your mom that made you bail). Okay, whatever, we'll go no matter what.
Sunday morning came early, but it was GORGEOUS. Cold, but gorgeous. A perfect winter day. Hope for spring. The event, which I was afraid might be a disorganized fiasco, based on some comments on their facebook page, was beautifully done. Tons of volunteers. Tons of traffic control. Eight thousand or more runners, our first large event. The treats at the end were as good or better than promised. The course was fairly hilly, which we have not encountered on a race. But we did well and had a blast. We will definitely do it again next year.
|I sure love my girl.|