Friday, November 29, 2013

The Turkey Roll

No, I'm not talking about a re-imagined recipe from the 50's involving rolled up turkey meat and cream cheese. I'm talking about a bike ride, on Thanksgiving! Last year I did the turkey trot, this year, the turkey roll.

The weather was gorgeous. I mean perfect, sunny, windless, gorgousity. San Francisco Bay perfection is what it was. Early that morning I'd packed my car with layer upon layer of warm clothes only to need hardly any of them. It was still a bit chilly when we started so I wore a thin base layer, a slightly thicker top and a windbreaker type jacket. I had on bike shorts with capri pants over them.

We started out at Blackie's Pasture in Tiburon, probably my favorite launch site for all things bike and run related. If there were a place to swim in the bay there it'd be perfection. Wait...maybe you can swim from there. Richardson Bay is right there...I'll have to check that out. Anyway, back to The Turkey Roll.

We rode from Blackie's Pasture toward Mill Valley without a clear plan on where to go. Down the Mill Valley/Sausalito path into Sausalito. Well heck, if we've gone this far, why not head toward SF? The views of the bay were phenomenal. So a bit of climbing from Sausalito up to the base of the GG Bridge. By then the plan was to ride over the bridge but Conzelman Road was calling to me.

Conzelman was the final hill on my list of hills. Marshall Wall (check), Big Rock/Lucas Valley Road (check, and check) and Conzelman Road. I don't know why this hill scared me so much. Oh wait, yes I do, because it looks scary as hell! It just winds up, and up and up. And there's the car factor. It's a two lane road on a cliffside with tourists winding up. Eek!

But yesterday seemed like ideal conditions. Ideal. Perfect weather (by then I'd ditched my top layer and converted my jacket into a vest) and almost no cars (remember, it was Thanksgiving morning, most sane people were home cooking). I had to do it. So I took a deep breath and started pedaling. I remembered all my hill skills - go as slow as you need to, pick a spot in the near distance and ride to that, remember - hills always look worse than they are, steady even strokes, take your time the hill will wait.

This hill was nice in that there was a little bit of a break about 1/3 of the way up. Here, check out the elevation profile (full Garmin stats here). You can hold your applause.

Conzelman Road & Marin Headlands elevation profile

After a brief photo opp we discussed ways to get back down. We could ride back the way we came or ride partially back that way and then turn left to go the tunnel route. Being adventurous and apparently able to conquer any hills we might encounter, I went with the mysterious tunnel route. But first, photos.

Satellite view of the ride.

Alive and well!
As I was riding up the hill I was thinking, "Yep, this is why this matters to me, why I want to stay in shape, why my eating habits matter." If only that were translating into healthier choices but more on that in a bit.

So a bit of WHEEEEEE! down the hill back into Sausalito. My legs started to hurt a tad in the last few miles but nothing that rose to the level of pain. Just a reminder that I've not been moving them enough lately. After the ride we went for a snack before I headed home. I had a quick shower, packed up the kids and Miguel and I headed to my mom's house. Thank goodness for moms who host Thanksgiving! I brought some cranberry/permission sauce and the tequila. Yep, margaritas were apparently on the menu.

I skipped the margaritas but most everything else made it into my mouth. Here's my Thanksgiving plate.

Thanksgiving Dinner
And if that's all I'd eaten all would have been right with the world. But no, I ate that plus olives, nuts, several (albeit tiny) slices of pie, chocolates...the list goes on I'm sure. I've been eating like that lately, like food is never going to come around again. No, more like I'm constantly looking for some form of distraction or comfort or anythingotherthanthemoment.

My weight is stable (142.2) but my body fat is creeping up. I was at 30% the other morning! It's exactly like I described in my Fool Me Once post - if you rely on your weight as the only measure of how you're doing, when you first start to fall off the wagon the scale fools you into thinking you're ok - when you're not. Your body fat is creeping up, your muscle is wasting away and soon, all hell is going to break loose. And I'm at soon right now.

What happens if you see a train coming down the tracks, directly at you? Get the hell out of the way, right? Do you see me moving? Not really. But I want this, I know I do, and I know I'll find my way back to what works for me before too long. If I don't, I might have a posse of people ready to do an intervention on me and send me off to fat camp somewhere for some re-conditioning.

Meanwhile, I'm about to undergo a bit of surgery. I'm not really in a position to share what that's all about right now but don't worry, no life threatening involved. It's just a bit personal and I'm not up for getting into too many details on that right now. One day I will, just not now. I know, a lot of mystery on my blog lately right? Sorry 'bout that.

So the surgery is this coming Tuesday and I'll be seriously recovering for a good 7 - 10 days. Doc says NO exercise for at least two weeks. If my timing is right I might be limping into the gym with all the resolutioners come January 1st. That I should be so lucky. So I have two goal races to get me back on track post-surgery. If my body responds well and I bounce back quick-like, I'll shoot for the Kaiser half in February. But more like is the Emerald Nut Run in March, which is only a 12k - more time to train and a shorter run, MUCH more likely to happen.

Ok, so the personal life is chaotic, work is busy, I'm in some sort of slump thing and I'm heading into surgery. Lovely. I guess we'll just have to see how this goes. You know I'll keep you posted. Thanks again for all the support - I'm really going to need it in the coming weeks/months.


  1. So mysterious lately! I am in a slump as well, but I know I will get my groove back. Just have to ride it out.

  2. I know, I hate it. The show required it and the surgery is, well, I can say more later. Yes, "ride" out that slump right along with me. Motivation ALWAYS comes back. I just don't want to gain 5 pounds in the process. Though I'm sort of destined to do that given what's happening with me right now. In fact, if I could keep it to only 5 pounds that would be a huge success. Thanks for the support :)

  3. Good luck with your surgery, Michelle! I had a Morton's neuroma removed last Feb. and was very worried about a month long break from any sort of exercise, but as it turned out, I think my appetite is directly tied to all the aerobic activity I normally do and I just wasn't that hungry during my recovery. Getting back into good running shape took about two months and was a little frustrating at times, but I made slow, steady progress and the positive side was that the recovery really gave my body a chance to "reset" and heal from some unrelated nagging little injuries. You will get through this...I know all too well that fear of returning to one's old ways, but it is so clear that you have made a commitment to good health and won't ever let yourself slide too far (for the record, I'm almost 18 years into the maintenance phase of weight loss now, and am finally learning to trust really does take time). Best wishes!


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