So a bunch of the guys were planning on doing a TT tomorrow up Norton's Summit with this fast cycling group from Super Elliot Cycles. They were gonna ride up with the big group to take advantage of the drafting and the motivation of riding up with people who are riding faster and holding more watts than you. So me and Freelee decided we'd also take TT tomorrow, just not with the fast group of course. But last night, because I was so nervous for the TT, I really didn't sleep much, I woke up like 5 times to pee, and couldn't really get a restful sleep all night. But sometimes you get the best times when you're tired or sore, and today I was definitely tired and sore. So anyways, the guys came around to use my floor pump before their TT, and at the same time they both apologized for their antics last night. I gave them both hugs and all was forgiven :)
Then I rode over to the meeting spot with them at 7:30. I was planning on going with Freelee with Harley pacing her, and just trying to stick with them for as long as I could before I popped off. But as usual Harley was a tad late, and because I was nervous, I was growing restless just waiting around and letting my muscles get stiff. So eventually I just asked Griff and Callum if they could pace me up for a sub 20. They were both TT'ing at around 8:20 so they thought it'd be a nice warmup for them as well. So we basically just took off straight away. The first half was hard but not excruciating, I could hear my breathing but the guys couldn't, and about 10 minutes in, I was starting to get into a rythym and feel my breath controlling my pace and my mind. Then when we got to the halfway mark, they started to increase the watts, and go for a negative split. By that time, I had gotten into the groove of my pedal strokes, and gotten used to the pain and lactic acid building up in my legs. So all I did was focus on breathing and sticking to Griff's wheel. I did my best to just clear my mind and not focus on the pain. The entire climb is only about 5.5 km long and I was going for a sub 20, so this was a relatively short and intense effort. And man, when we were about I was really losing steam and motivation. I could feel my breath getting laboured and flighty, and my mind was starting to race with doubts about whether I could hold on to the pace we were doing. But literally right when my mind was entertaining those thoughts, Griff started encouraging me by saying things like: you're doing so well, keep it up, you're almost there, COME ON! And that's what kept me going. Then at the final stretch, he shouted: SPRINT NOW STEPH, give it everything you've got! And... I did. And boy did it feel both disgusting and AWFUL, yet also incredible and empowering. Then when I finished, I just rolled back down and tried not to hurl. I felt so sick but so happy, regardless of the time, I knew I gave it everything! I ended up getting an 18:20 which was way beyond what I was expecting, and I'm so proud of myself for acheiving it, but I know I owe so much of it to Griff and Callum's pacing and support. Freelee and Joey both ended up getting a PB as well in the low 17's which is just INSANE, next level inspiring!
Then me, Freelee and Joey rode back up Nortons together REAL slow while the guys met at the base to wait for the group. So the guys that we knew who joined the big group to TT were: Griff, Biggi, Harley, Anton, Callum, Keiran and Andrew. Griff and Anton wanted something in the low 14's and Biggi wasn't sure what to expect. They all ended up doing PHENOMONAL! Biggi (who's only been cycling since April) got an impressive 15:38, and Andrew who had been trying to crack sub 15 acheived that! Then Griff got a flying 14:30 and Anton 13:50! And Harley of course got the fastest time of low 13's.
Then after just chilling by the tap and talking for ages, we eventually all parted ways and went home. I then showered, edited some videos, uploaded a video, met a friend in the city, then went over to the guys place to drop some stuff off, and pick up Callum's lock to borrow. And, instead of going out to eat, I decided a night in on my own with a disney movie was much needed. You know how sometimes, you just can't be fucked to talk, and all you have the energy for is eating and watching the Lion King, well yeah that was me tonight. So I cooked up a mountain of rice and broccoli, ate it with BBQ sauce and sriricaha, then had a whole box of granola and about half a pack of all bran cereal for dessert with jam and mint thins, all while watching the Lion King 2. It was epic, and now it's only 9, and I'm off to bed. YEO!