Friday night I took a final math test to exit the remedial program I have been in. I knew I had already passed the class but you kinda need to pass this test to move forward. It's very individualized so no two people will have the same test because it's based on what you got wrong the first time you took it. Long story short...I PASSED IT!!!!! I was so prepared to fail it that I thought the girl was joking when she gave me my score. You need a 30 to pass and I got a 34 - I was stoked. I came out the doors to some of my classmates and I actually cried. I felt so relieved, relieved beyond words. Math has always been throughout my school years a huge challenge for me. I just don't get it. Give me English any day of the week and I know I'll pass. Math? Not so much. I had really lost almost all hope, because this was the 3rd time I had registered for the class the 2 prior times I dropped it because I wasn't understanding anything. But this time I made it the whole semester and I passed the class with a 75...meanwhile my goal was just to get a 60 which is a D and the lowest passing grade you can get. I'm telling you, I wasn't aiming high but I did it! I surpassed my expectations and that is always a nice thing. That white piece of paper with that simple score is getting framed as a constant reminder of what can be done.
Saturday I went for a 30 mile bike ride with two of my teammates/friends. It was cloudy and cool with sprinkles here and there. The whole time I was riding I felt really really good. This is a route I have done before - we went from the GW Bridge to Piermont and back. My two favorite moments during the ride were when we were on our way back home on 9W and I got to the part I always dread...riding on the highway on a slow climb. I think the reason I fear/dread it so much is that I had such a difficult time with it last year the first time I rode my "arch nemesis". That is now what I have dubbed that particular stretch of the ride. But I have improved because I can just keep going and not feel like it takes me so long to reach the top. I mean last year I was so tired that my coach was pushing me while he was riding his bike! My 2nd favorite part were the last 5 miles. It always seems like it's flat and that's where I really can catch up to everyone else but this time I was in the lead. I dropped into the big ring and just started pedaling. I was in a groove and it felt soooo nice. I left my cyclometer at home so unfortunately, I couldn't see how fast I was going but I think I was doing at least 17-18mph steady. The icing on the cake was that I had gotten my average heart rate down to 154bpm, and my max hear rate went down to 186bpm. While I know that sounds really high to you that is much better for me. I tend to lean towards a higher HR.
I hate to cut this short but I need to hit the sack. When I write next I'll tell you all about my 1st open water swim which I did on Sunday...oh my lordy lord was that a revelation. But before I go I wanted to leave you with a few key terms:
- cyclometer = a device that tells you how man y miles travelled, max & avg. speed, cadence (kind of like a cars odometer)
- cadence = # of revolutions of the pedals a cyclists makes each minute. Elite cyclists typically have a cadence of between 80–120 rpm while recreational cyclists might pedal at about 60–80 rpm. Lance Armstrong was known for his very high cadences of around 120 rpm for hours on end.*http://sportsmedicine.about.com/od/glossary/g/rpms.htm
- HR = heat rate
- BPM = beats per minute