Training partners - or how to make a ride really hard!

Riding with your husband who wants you to get faster is great - he really pushes me and ignores all my whining. It's been pretty frequent that we've been riding up Stratton or Buckhorn and he's behind me, threatening to take off my baby ring. I'm getting better about being able to produce even power in the middle for most of the climbs around here, but I still really like that granny gear. So what is an easy way to make a ride even harder then riding with Nick and his friends? (I don't get the "girl" treatment with them. If I can't keep up, then I need to go home)

Ride with both your husband and your coach! Adam joined us for our ride on Sunday and that meant no slacking for Tracy at all. I'm setting the pace through Stratton up to Gold Camp road and the anticipated "No baby ring!!" comes from down the line of guys. And all I hear is chuckling behind me. (Nick told me later that Adam replied "what if I'm already in my baby ring?" and Nick told him he wasn't talking to him. That's when I heard the laughing.) Get to the top of the Chutes and it's off again. I grab a wheel and hang on for dear life as they set the pace towards the Columbine drop in. I did make it all the way down Columbine, even with the really loose conditions. It was not elegant, as I managed to get unclipped twice and bounce off a few rocks - but I stayed upright! Our second lap around Stratton and I was really hurting. The guys were perfectly happy hanging on to my wheel and letting me kill myself on the climbs.

This time, when we got to Gold Camp, the plan was to ride up to Buckhorn turn off and decide the rest of the route there. I found a nice wheel and stayed there past the two tunnels, catching my breath and recovering from the climbs. Just after the second tunnel, I locked my fork out and shifted to a harder gear. The guys were too busy talking - no one noticed as I stood up and drifted to the outside of the group. Then I attacked - and I actually managed to take everyone by surprise and get a pretty good gap on the gang. It took Adam a few minutes to catch on. I kept the pace going until the main parking lot, then waited for the rest of the group. (Nick said that I did take everyone by surprise and I had about 50 yards on the group before Adam reacted and started chasing. Matt didn't know if he should try to chase back on or not and Dave started in with the Phil and Paul narration of the attack.)

After the ride and my run, I was dead tired. Ice bath, and flop on the floor was the activity for the rest of the evening. But it was a great day and I'd had a good time riding with the guys. It's really nice that I'm starting to be able to keep up a little better.

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