12 December, 2013

It’s like riding a bike

Cycling up a mountain is a lot like having sex: If you start too fast or hard you’re going to explode before you reach the end, and you’re going to end up spent and embarrassed.

The scenery was orgasmic

Climbing the volcano Teide on my long ride I’d say I was ‘finished’ around 15km in, or more importantly 25km from the top. The legs felt good, I was mulling over the week’s training and feeling pleased. Endorphins were flooding my brain to an ecstasy inducing level; basically what every athlete lives for. Then boom!

Imagine you’re getting it on with the woman of your dreams whilst driving 150kph in your classic Porsche to your chateau. Suddenly she slams on the brakes and boots you out.

Now you’re standing in a street, in Hull, naked.

Doing some responsible rock jumping 

I was slipping down the waterslide of energy levels into the whirlpool of glycogen debt (I stayed next door to a waterpark, can you tell?) I was out of food, and water, and the next café was apparently 12km further up (It turns out it was in fact 15km. I was counting!!) At this point I genuinely thought I was going to have to thumb a lift off a random tourist, but some kind of pigheadedness kept me moving forward. The hour between 4:45 and 5:45 is one of the darkest I’ve had for a while.

I finally dragged my sorry behind into the café and frittered all of my nine euros on life’s essentials: coffee, coke and three sugary cakes. Utter bliss. Then I got back on my bike and rode the final 8km full gas! Just kidding, I grovelled my way up the rest of the climb. Once across the plateau I went down the 43km descent the fastest I ever have and I’d credit this mostly to the fact that I didn’t brake. Braking is a waste of energy; energy which I didn’t have!

Bicep time

I arrived back at the apartment feeling like Billy-big-balls having done 182km in 7 hours and 17 minutes, and I'm sure that the chain-smoking, overweight, alcohol-swilling Brits there were toasting my achievement with lambrini out of plastic disposable cups.

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