By Virginia Winder
Had my first spill off the bike today.
Coach Clint and Chris (need to come up with an exciting name for him) predicted I'd have three falls, so I can notch one off.
Just grazed an elbow and my left knee, so no major damage, mainly because I fell from a stationary position. The bike was completely unscratched.
It was my first outing wearing my clip-in shoes and was going up and down Gaine St practising stopping and starting. Stopped behind a car and was starting off again when I fell.
My pedals were in the wrong position, so I went to put my foot down but it had already clicked in. Bang, down I went. I lay there feeling pretty pathetic, twisting in vain to get my shoe off the pedal.
Husband Warren sped to my aid, undid my shoe and picked up bike and then me.
I limped to the pavement and asked: "Can we go home now?"
"No, you are getting back on your bike, now," he said. "You are going to do this."
Pouting slightly, I got back on my bike and kept practising.
I can now say I have mastered the click-in, click-out business and can easily stop at intersections.
And I only yelled at one car driver; a woman who opened her car door just as I was passing. Luckily, I second-guessed her move and went wide, but she got the message.
Oh dear, I could be a terror on the roads, but I will do my best to be polite, honest.
I have a new red helmet too, a Christmas gift (thanks Barbara and Graeme), so I now look like a red flame or a fiery chilli. I think the latter would be most appropriate in this household, since Warren has a large collection of chilli sauces from around the world.
Went for a great power walk on Tuesday evening and my foot felt good. Came home, did some routine stretches and iced my foot using a frozen water bottle.
Yesterday, I went swimming, but only did 20 lengths. The reason was another swimming outfit - a long halter top and short shorts. They didn't work. Won't go into specifics, but the top was not aerodynamic or supportive and was abrasive in sensitive places. Painful.
Earlier yesterday, I interviewed a master runner about gardening. He's a guy called Gerald Dravitzki, who's run 50 marathons.
Yes, we talked about blueberries, cranberries, feijoas and more, but our conversation also turned to running. "The big thing is that it takes time," he said. "If you've got that will and determination, anybody can do it."
To make the transition from walking to running, he recommends starting off by running from one power pole to another then walking between the next two, then running to the next one, then walking again...
After our long garden tour, we finished on the run.
Gerald had me jogging down up and down his driveway, checking out my style and arm movement.
On the phone today he told me: "You've got a good forward momentum. In six months' time you'll be running as fast as a robber's dog."
High praise indeed... but then I went for that bike ride.
What's that old saying about pride and falls?
Went for shoe click-in, click-out bike training session
Worked for 5 hours
Slept for 7 hours
Ate three healthy meals
Pigged out on blueberries (courtesy of Gerald)
Drank 3 cups of coffee
Drank little water
Swam 20 lengths (1km)
Worked for 4 hours
Swam in the sea
Slept for 8 hours
Ate two healthy meals (ran out of time for breakfast and felt lethargic)
Drank lots of water
Drank 1 cup of coffee