Friday, July 17, 2009

Chick That!


So I'm finishing up my hill repeats last night on the inside of Torrey Pines. I selected Pandora (Look 585 Elle Road Bike) instead of Torch (Kuota K Factor Tri Bike) since I'm taking her on the century ride next weekend. She's a dream to climb on. Anyway, I'm cooling down on a final, mellow climb on the outside of Torrey Pines (longer but less steep), and this fit, muscular guy blows past me on his sweet-lookin', black-and-yellow Specialized Transition. I am temporarily humbled and my ego gets knocked down a few pegs. No biggie, I tell myself. You did a good, solid workout today. Just focus on the cooldown.

Then, a 2nd guy on a tri bike passes me. Only he's got skinny, hairy legs and is riding a Fuji. Now it's getting downright humiliating. But wait a minute....he's slowing down. The dude used all he had to pass me, and now he's slowing down! I'm gaining on him. I take my time, slowly reeling in my prey. We still have 3/4 of a mile to the top. He's clearly struggling, weaving all over the road, shifting awkwardly, as if uncomfortable with the TT bike. He stands up out of the saddle to climb for a few jerky pedal strokes, then plops back into the saddle, weaves, repeats. Standing to climb on the outside of Torrey Pines? It's only a 4% grade. Wasted energy, wasted energy.

Then, I realize I'm going to pass him. I take my time, savoring the process, a cat playing with an injured mouse. I'm closing in on him, evaluating him closely. Did I err in my judgement? Is this guy saving a burst for the top? I'm on top of him now, practically breathing down his neck. Because I've taken my time closing the gap, I'm well-rested, my breathing is calm and slow. I make my move with efficient, calculated pedal strokes, forced to call, "On your left!" since he begins weaving erratically all over the shoulder again. He pulls to the right, and I blow by him, shifting to a bigger gear as I pass. Click! My speed increases by 2 mph, and I drop him. I'm on the final third of the hill and the steepness begins to level out. Instead of slowing and beginning to recover as is the instinctual tendency, I increase my power and intensity to finish strong, leaving him in my metaphorical dust. Maybe I sound a little harsh, maybe I was a little too mean but I have never, never, ever been able to pass people climbing hills before. The victory is glorious. I resist the urge to throw my arms in the air and blow kisses to the crowd. I feel like I've just won an Alp stage at the Tour de France. I can almost hear the guy's friend (on the Specialized), who is waiting for him at the top, "Dude, you just got totally CHICKED!"


PS--Jumbo Humboldt squid have been washing up at La Jolla Cove. I just love new swimming partners, especially when they have tentacles!

12 comments:

Wes said...

I love being chicked. Especially on the bike :-O

don said...

Good for you! That big base of training is really paying off.
BTW. Is there an opposite term to "chicked"? Like getting "neanderthal'ed? Thinking of an image like the dude in those Geiko commercials.

Grey Beard said...

My, you have come a long way on the bike. No wasting tons of energy climbing out of the saddle, just pushing right to the edge of your aerobic & lactate threshold 100% of the time - in the saddle.

About 7 lifetimes ago, when living in LA, I used to ride up into the San Gabriel Mtns every other day to a quaint ranger station. It was about 1,700ft of 8% grade with no breaks. I dropped a small army of riders in the last 500 yards using that same technique.

A great feeling to be able to stand and sprint over small rollers, and keep the momentum going. Your ride report reminds me so much of my Party Pardee experience. Fun, fun, fun.

Grey Beard said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shannon said...

Sweet Victory! Congrats to you.

Kelli said...

#1 - Awesome Ride
#2 - Do you really swim with squid? I thought Long Island Sound jellies were bad!!!

Bob D said...

That was beautifully cruel.

teacherwoman said...

Love it! Way to go!

Leah said...

Awesome! He totally deserved to be chicked.

Diana said...

"Like a cat playing with an injured mouse".........love it!

Rainmaker said...

Ha, awsome! I thought about this post a few times as I passed some folks on climbs during my ride.

Matthew said...

I love the slow, methodical pass on a climb! You know you've got them, but they have no clue, and it's just a matter of time until you blow past them! Well done!