Despite the hot weather conditions, I felt confident and well-prepared. Ca. 7 months ago after joining cycling club I started intensive training with a professional trainer and I used the advice of sports dietitian. The combination of balanced diet and regular exercises enabled me to enhance my endurance and efficiency. I also learned how to stay hydrated before, during and after the race as well as what and when to eat during competition.
Richer for the experience, I tried to challenge myself one more time against the mountain. I checked in at the start line at 9:20 (40 minutes before the start). I also did a short warm-up what turned out later to be a huge mistake (should have done longer warm-up). During the first kilometer of the race I felt terrible with no pedal power. It was just a beginning but my heart rate was beatingas though it were going to jump out of my chest. The critical moment happened next to Vang stave church where the steep uphill slope almost killed me. My heart rate reached almost 180 beats per minute and I started seeing dark spots in front of my eyes. I realized that it is time to get off the bike and walk up a hill to make my heartbeat return to normal. This was the first and the last time I walked off the bike during the race. Besides, the rest of the race went smoothly with only one exception.
Ca. 200 metres before crossing the finishing line, I almost lost my starting number. The number hung on the last of the four cords. I decided to pull the number in order to prevent it from falling down (I had to bring it to the end as the chip was built in inside). I took the number between the teeth and successfully crossed the finish line. What a relief and surprise when I realized that I beat the last year’s result by more than 20 minutes, finishing the race in 1h and 32 minutes.
This is the reason I like doing it – to challenge myself and to improve myself. The bigger the challenge the bigger the opportunity to grow. When I realized all my efforts were worth it, the success in line with the taste of victory was even greater!