I have heard lots of folks talk about the little things lately. I have to agree that sometimes it's the little accomplishments that amount to the most.
With it being summertime I have to wait to get my swim workouts in the evening after my husband gets home from work. This has lead to a downward spiral of evening workouts. I swim Tuesday night, wake up Wednesday exhausted and not ready to do my next workout, I push it until the evening which results in most of my workouts getting done in the evening. Last Thursday was difficult because I had planned to go to the gym in the morning before my daughter's swim team practice so I could run. However, the night before she had a swim meet and both girls were up really late. My youngest slept in until 8:30am and my oldest until 9am. This is basically unheard of from two girls who wake up at 7am 7 days a week. I knew they needed their sleep and I wasn't going to wake them up so I could get my run in. So once again, I pushed another workout until 7pm. I was so not motivated. I told myself I would just go out and run my old loop. I used to run/walk this loop a long time ago when I first started running. Mostly because it was a mile loop but the ups and downs of my neighborhood always made it so that I could never run the entire distance. I figured I would go out and just enjoy the evening, it didn't matter how long I ran or if I walked it, I just needed the fresh air and some endorphin's. Much to my surprise this loop is actually 1.35 miles (I didn't even have GPS back in the days that I use to try and run it!). Even better was that I ran the entire distance. It's silly, I haven't tried to run this in years because I have been more focused on distance but it was a nice little surprise at how I don't need to be scared of hills all of the time!
Speaking of hills. Since I got my road bike it's only been out on the actual road maybe 8 times. Most of my riding is on the trainer. There is this one hill on my local trail that taunts me both running and biking. I can't run up it or bike up it. Mostly when running because I'm that far out on the trail I've already been running a lot of miles and this hill just seems ridiculous. It's a short one, but really steep. With the bike, since I'm new to clip-less pedals my largest fear is that I'll fall over mid hill if I run out of gears or at the very top of the hill is a busy intersection that needs to be crossed. My other greatest fear was that even if I made it to the top of the hill I might tip over trying to unclip if I needed to for vehicle traffic from sheer exhaustion. The other issue is that prior to this hill it's a slow steady climb before you even get to it. Meaning my legs are already sore and I'm already close to running out of gears.
Sunday I decided I needed to attempt it. There weren't too many people on the trail yet so I figured embarrassment would be minimal if I fell over, I was 1 mile away from the car and could limp it back if I really needed to. So, I stopped a little bit before the base, popped a Honey Stinger and drank some water. I clipped back in and went for it, and to my surprise I made it to the top without using all of my gears! Lucky for me, there were no cars at the intersection and I made it across safely. Holy shit, I did it! I still had a little bit more of uphill work prior to the lovely downhill all the way back to the car but I got through that as well.
After making it back safely to the car, I threw on my running shoes and headed out for a 15 minute run. My heart rate was feeling the residual affects of the effort on the bike, but it was all very worth it.
Below is the Training Peaks elevation graph of that little hill. I must say it is always fun to run down it or ride down it on the way out :)