After a bit of a crappy training week (these seem to be accumulating recently....) and cutting my training short on Thursday I was looking forward to and being very motivated for a good weekend's worth of training, the last one before a 4 week stint of weekend races start (K Capital Cup 3, British NPS 1, K Capital Cup 4, Irish NPS 1) - especially because I would be quite rested by the weekend.
But, it never seems to go by plan. First I got a bit of a cold which started on Friday. Nonetheless I got up early on Saturday to go on my group road spin with St. Tiernan's Cycling Club (they start their spins just up the road from me, sooooo handy and means I don't need to get up that early :)).
Just as I got out of the door, it started raining, turning into a torrential rain shower by the time I had cycled up to the meeting point a few hundred meters up the road. 5 guys had also been so brave to stand this weather and we set off up the hill, the rain not letting up a bit. Within minutes we were all drenched wet right through to the skin (forget about rain jackets, the only suitable gear would have been wetsuits!). But we went on, during this horrendous weather, with the wind coming from the side and the rain drops like pins and needles on your face and eyeballs. Between Kiltiernan and Enniskerry there was such a huge puddle that even the cars changed the side of the road to get through (maybe I should call it flooding).
With every kilometer that we went away from home I felt colder, wetter, crappier. Also, due to a beginner out on his bike the first time we couldn't go very fast and I was getting cold because I wasn't generating enough heat from the exercise. Anyhow, we made it to Kilmacanogue, southwards onto the N11 and went on.
When I had to go for a pee I couldn barely pull down my cycling shorts, as all the feeling in my fingers was gone. I had to use my thumbs as hooks! Don't ask me how I got it back up... We went on a bit further, but because the miserable weather had not improved one bit, we were all happy to turn back early, making it a 2 hour only spin for me (I was down for doing a 3.5hour spin that day).
When I came home I tried to open the door, but couldn't, my fingers would not follow my brain's command to turn the key (somehow Quentin Tarantino's movie "Kill Bill" came into my mind: "Wiggle, my toe.... wiggle!", just I tried to say "Turn the key, turn it!" But it was just not possible, my fingers just couldn't grap anything any more. So I used my mouth to turn the key in the lock - thank god my neighbors didn't see that! Straight into the shower (well, after taking off clothes, which took another 15min or so) and a hot drink. I think I have never been so cold in my life!
I then looked at the rain radar and guess what, the biggest hugest rain cloud had just passed over Ireland, all yellow colour (meaning heavy rain....) and was just about to clear off. And true, for most of the afternoon the sun came out, interrupted only by a few scattered showers.
Wisely I had put my wet clothes onto the heating and into the drier, so that in the afternoon, at about 4 o'clock, when my clothes had dried off, I went out on another spin, in the sunshine, dry and almost warm (whereever the sun was shining and no wind) and made up another 1hour and 45min of a very powerfull and motivated spin.
Thank god I had gone out again! I felt sooo much better after, feeling that I had done some very good and strong training. I could really push into the pedals, and it is such a great feeling to be able to pedal hard and give it all. Yeah, motivation!