Well, I did my first time trial today...a 40k at the Hawaii State TT championship...It was my first competitive ride of any sorts, and boy, was it ever a humbling experience.
I don't own a TT bike, so I did it on my Tarmac SL3 with clip on bars (which I will never use again). I took off, nervous as heck, and immediately went anaerobic (though when I uploaded it it doesn't show). I felt as if I was hyperventilating looked down and my HR was 187-190 for about the first mile. I thought to myself "I still have 24 miles of this!" So I backed off a bit.
It seemed to take forever to get back down to my threshold (about 160) and comfortable, but I did, and so began the battle with the headwinds for the next 10 miles.
Weighing in at roughly 140, give or take a couple pounds, the winds here in HI pose a challenge for me at times, and today was one of those times. I think I would rather climb hills. After about 5 miles of this, I wanted to cry, haha. Guys and gals on their TT bikes were passing me up in a blink of an eye and I started an internal war with myself. I wanted to quit, but then I saw a cone marker...I was 1 mile away from the turn around...A little motivation.
After I turned around, I had a nice breezy tail wind...for roughly 2 miles. I was happy...Then it happened. The winds shifted and the battle began, again...I was suffering once more, but had a lot more confidence to actually finish the run.
Well, overall, 1 hour and 20 minutes passed. I crossed the finish line and dismounted my bike, and dropped to my knees and flat on my face. My friend says "Good job! You finished." I replied, still face down in the grass "THANKS!" and lifted my arm in acknowledgement...For about 10 minutes I had to crawl before I regained strength enough to stand up.
Really, I can say I was proud that I actually finished. It was an experience that I can build on and take what I have learned and challenge myself even more. I think that rather than a Time Trial, this event became more of a confidence builder for me. Through all the agony and suffering I went through today, the time doesn't even bother me any more. Knowing I finished probably the biggest athletic challenge I have faced in my 42 years of life is satisfaction enough. A 40, 50, 60 mile bike ride is one thing, but today was an honest to goodness test of willpower...