Sleep Debt

The riders in the Tour de France apparently don’t like the rest days that much. Sure, they appreciate that they can sleep in, and they don’t have to travel in the bus for ages to get to the start. They also like that they can see their families, but when you’ve been riding long days for 7, 8 days and you suddenly only ride 2-3 hours one day, the next day it hurts like hell.

But I love the rest days because I get to catch up on my sleep debt. The Tour is on television here live, but the time difference means that it is late at night. Now I’m a girl who needs 8 hours of sleep, but I’ve been sleeping about 6 hours a night, and after about 3 weeks, you’re well into a sleep debt.

I taped it last night and went to bed early because I was going on the group ride this morning and I need to get up about 5am for that. The group ride starts at 6.30am from the bike shop, so part of the time is used just getting to the bike shop, but I don’t move fast at that hour, so 5am is a good time. I can eat breakfast, have a cup of tea, flick through the paper and get changed without having to rush.

Normally I ride my bike down to the bike shop because when I go on the group ride I borrow a bike from Mickey. This morning I drove down because it was a bit windy and I was feeling a tiny bit lazy.

So I was trying out the Scott Speedster S20 this morning. It is the bike above the one that I posted earlier – Tour de France sale. It was fantastic – smooth changing, pretty comfortable (the seat not so much, but that is changeable.) It has carbon seat stays, and every bike that I’ve tried of Mickey’s didn’t have them, and the road noise would come up into my back and make it sore. This one – no soreness.

So I bought it!

I have a road bike. I’m kind of freaked out about this. I’m going on the slow ride tomorrow (we talk too much but we do all the good hills) and I’m taking it. I haven’t put on my new pedals – as I told Mickey this morning, I’ve found that I can clip in and out ok, but I’ve noticed that when I really have to stop, and fast – I still try to lift my foot up, instead of twisting out. Combined with remembering that I’m on a road bike and that the brakes are in an entirely different position, it could get a little interesting. So I’m a little afraid of using the pedals on the shiny shiny shiny new bike. Which is patently absurd, but as I said, I’m still a little freaked out about this.

Mickey put a seat on it that has a dirty great cut-out in it, so that should make it much better, and I got a seat bag, tube, levers, lights and a pump too. When I got the bike home I put my toe cages on it (God! This is so stupid! Fuck it. I’m putting the proper pedals on), lights, pump etc. I put chapstick in the seat bag (every seat bag should have one). I’m ready to go.

After I did all that, I had a shower and went to bed for an hour. I got up in time for my eyebrow wax, went to the supermarket with red marks after the wax, came home and went back to bed.

Three hours down on the sleep debt, and one road bike. It’s a pretty big day.

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