Sometimes you’re the slowest and that is just fine

It’s July 21st and I’m back from a bike ride, a fast bike ride.

I’m tired and hungry, so tired and so hungry that on the ride home, after the real ride, I slowed down going by a friend’s house and wondered if she would feed me and drive me home.

Just 3 km. I made it.

Even Strava agreed it was a “tough” ride.

What made it tough? I was the slowest rider on a group ride with intervals and race simulations. This means I clung on the back for dear life, heart rate racing, and watched time and time again as they zoomed off ahead of me. Ouch.

The cycling coach I work with has two week night group rides, a fast ride and an intermediate ride. This is the fast ride.

(An aside: Bike speeds are like condom sizing. No slow, no small. Just intermediate and fast bike rides; medium, large, and extra large condoms.)

Our average speed was 30 km/hr. More telling was my average heart rate, 150 bpm with spikes in the 170s.

When you are with people riding faster than you, you get good at drafting. See Susan’s post on drafting me during the bike rally. You also get good at catching up quickly should a gap open up between you and them.

For their part, they kept smiling at me and offering words of encouragement.

Yes, I was the slowest. But I’m not always the slowest. And I’m getting faster.

Dear fast people, I’ll be back.

See this post on why cyclists are generally happy to ride, some of the time, with people who are slower. And this post offers advice for what to do when you’re the slowest.

Here’s a fun video of the Vikings fast bunch in Canberra, Australia.

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