The training week went pretty well. I did not get either swim in this week, but I hit all of the other workouts as planned. Well, kind of. Today was supposed to be a 2 hour hilly bike ride. Dave, who's training for his second ironman of the season, was riding three hours. I mostly ride/workout alone so I looked forward to the opportunity to ride with someone. We started off together and rode the first hill together. Dave said that he thought I was riding strong and that he might have trouble staying with me on the hills. I figured he was just playing possum (he does that sometimes). When we got to the first real hill of the ride I rode away from Dave. Dave caught me at the top of the hill while I was eating (I need to find a more efficient way to fuel - perhaps a flask). I caught Dave on the downhill and then put the hammer down. Apparently Dave was feeling a little competitive as he caught me and passed me on the second set of hills. I caught back up to him and we rode together for a while. When we got to the rollers after Route 30 I was feeling frisky again so I went hard all in the big chainring. I opened a fairly large gap but did not want to ride alone for the entire ride so I eased up when we started our second loop. I decided though that if Dave did not catch up be the end of the hill on Reeves Road I would put the hammer down again and see if I could stay away from him for the rest of the ride. Thanks to a car he caught me at a stop sign. I'm not sure where I started putting a cap on him again, but I found out later that he stopped to take his leg warmers off. Almost feels like I cheated a little. I rode the big hill almost as well as I rode it the first time, perhaps a little better. I fueled for the last time at the top of that hill but did so more efficiently and kept going. I rode the flats tempo and as I was starting the second set of hills I caught a glimpse of Dave behind me. The bastard just wouldn't give up!! As soon as I saw him I started riding the hills much harder. I climbed standing a lot more and just plain ol' shred my legs. I did the rollers in the big chainring again and the last hill of the rollers is a small chainring hill - I dropped my chain the first time around so I gently shifted down so that I would not lose any time to a dropped chain and rode that hill hard as well. I rode the last part standing - I could really feel the burn. It was all downhill and flat from there. I rode the downhill hard and gave it everything I had left on the flats. I turned down Broad Brook Road and as I was turning saw Dave behind me (not right behind me but closer than I thought he would be). I thought he would follow me but he went straight and took the next turn. We hooked up on the way in and Dave said I kicked his ass. I don't quite see it that way - I think if the ride was much longer the tide would have turned in Dave's favor, but it was fun anyway.
I'm running the Hartford Marathon in six days. I hope I did not go too long and hard today. I will adhere to the plan exactly for the rest of the week. Personally, I don't think today will negatively effect me and its the most fun I had on the bike in a while so it was worth it.