No turning back

Ever since I said out loud that I plan to ride 100 miles on my bike, I have this little voice in my head that is telling me I’m crazy. You’re too slow…you’re too fat…you haven’t ridden enough…that’s a really long way…that’s a long time to be on a tiny seat…what if you can’t make it?…
On and on it goes.

Still, though, I am sticking to my training schedule. Two short rides a week (20 or so miles each) plus one long ride that is progressively longer each week.
Last Monday I was supposed to ride 40 miles. I know that my parents live exactly 20 miles from my door to theirs so I could get in the 40 riding there and back. Two summers ago, I rode the 20 miles there and called Kelly for a ride home, and even that was hard for me.

It’s a slow climb all the way there pretty much and at one point, I remember giving up. It was after what felt like a big hill. I was so tired. I stopped and got off my bike and lay flat on my back on the grass by a church. I called Kelly and told him I was too spent to go on and asked him to come pick me up. I ended up getting on my bike again after about 5 minutes and telling myself to just make it to the top of that next hill and then decide what to do. Over and over I did this until I made it to my final destination. I did the whole 20 miles but I was wiped out.

On Monday, as I followed the same route, I remember thinking that everything felt easier. The hills weren’t killing me as they had that first time.
When I got to that ‘give up’ spot, I stopped to take a picture of myself to celebrate my progress.

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This time was different. At that point in my ride I felt amazing! Like I could go all day. Such a difference! The rest of the way there was the hardest part of the whole ride but I knew I could do it, and I did. I rode there and back…all 40 miles.

As I peddled I smiled because that tiny bit of progress had silenced those doubts in my mind. Not to say they won’t return ever again, but I have something to say to that critical,skeptical voice now.
Look at my progress! I get stronger every day. Why not me?

AnnaSunday April 15, 2012 - 7:59 pm

I’m so glad you kept going and going! My sub conscience is always trying to stop me from doing hard things, way to go for not listening. Next stop, Ogden! Come see me, and I’ll have lunch and a ride waiting for you!

KatieSunday April 15, 2012 - 4:13 pm

Good JOB! I know that feeling. I have had it on so many long runs. BUT YOU CAN DO IT! That is what I have to tell myself all the time too. On Saturdays when I am running a long run I tell myself “just ten more steps” and then “just ten more” and then it has been 10 miles. It is amazing what the mind can do even when the body is done.

Famous ErinSaturday April 14, 2012 - 10:30 pm

I love everything that Hannah said, and I totally agree. You are such an inspiration to me on many, many levels. You are so amazing, and I am so proud of you for yet another thing that you are taking on, and doing it!

SylviaSaturday April 14, 2012 - 4:14 am

You are truly an inspiration! You have passion! You have will power! You like to encourage yourself— and it works! ATTA GIRL!!! Good for you! You’ve come a long way, baby! You CAN do hard things, and this will be a huge accomplishment for you!! Keep up the awesome work— so proud of you!!

HannahFriday April 13, 2012 - 11:16 pm

Great post, Kelly!! This really spoke to me today because I am running my second ever 5K race tomorrow. I am a SLOW runner, and I’ve been doing stupid things all day, like googling ultra marathons and reading about people who can run 5K in 12-point-something minutes. NOT helpful!! So thank you for reminding me that I am actually racing MYSELF, improving my own fitness, so that I can look back and remember when it was hard for me to run 5K. I’d forgotten about that part! I can now see how far I’ve come, not just how far I have to go (I’d like to run a half marathon one day). WELL DONE to you for working so hard towards your goal, and taking a moment to reflect back and congratulate yourself on your progress. I look forward to reading about you conquering the 100 miles (I know you can do it). Keep it up! :-)

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