Nitty Gritty Dirty Grief

To my Trainer

A couple months ago, my cocky self signed up for a bike ride called the Triple Bypass- it’s 120 miles over 3 mountain passes. It is a tough, tough ride. But my cocky self felt confident, I made it into the lottery and paid my $120.

I DO get a bike jersey out of the deal, so I got that going for me.

My lovely trainer-friend Tracey approached my cocky-self. “Have you started training?”

“Training? It’s February…the race is in July!”

Training….ha!

“Oh she’ll be fine,” my husband said. “Heather is a Hoss.”

Hoss I’ve been called a Hoss once before, a group of 7 men and yours truly were lost in Crested Butte on a mountain bike trail for 8 hours. When we got back to camp, hungry and in the dark, a friend of mine said, “Heather did great, she’s a Hoss.”

I guess Hoss is boy speak for something complimentary.

I think the verdict is still out.

Hoss….I think I would rather be called something pretty, like a princess, or fairy-queen or ruler of all that is pink. That sounds better than Hoss.

Never-the-less my Hoss status did not convince Tracey that I could get my hiney over three passes. Tracey trains people to complete Iron-man triathlons….complete 2 miles of swimming, one marathon and 120 miles of biking….one might call this a long day. She is quite good and the people she trains do finish what they started. So I listened.

“I am going to write up a training schedule for you. Will you follow it?”

“Of course, I will follow it.” I said, holding a glass of wine in one hand and a cheesy poof in the other. I didn’t have the heart to tell her I am a trainer’s nightmare. I under-train and over-estimate my physical capabilities. I once trained for a marathon while still hangin‘ at the bars as a social-smoker. It was quite an achievement.

But those days are over. I am 40 after all and it’s time to take my aging body seriously…and I would hate let dear Tracey down.

So on Monday I went out for my first ride and was surprised to find it a little bittersweet. Two years ago, riding my bike became a solace, an escape for an hour or two from being Samantha’s mom. I now fondly recall those times, pulling my bike out, knowing that Samantha was in the care of her nurse or her Grandma’s and riding for a coveted hour or two…with the cell phone close at hand.

As I rode towards snow-capped mountains, I recalled the jersey I was given last year….Green Eggs and Ham…I am Sam….

And I started to chat…

I am Sam
I am Sam

Would you, could you in a box?
Would you, could you, with a fox?

I pedaled towards the mountains….

I am Sam
Sam I am

Would you, could you with a mouse?
Would you, could you in a house?


My heart rate increased…

Sam I am,
I am Sam

I will not eat green eggs and ham
I will not eat them Sam-I-am

I am Sam
I am Sam

And I got through my first ride; 25 miles and all. On my way home I stopped to watch a herd of elk and ate some gummy bears because a ride is not a ride without gummy bears.

Thank you Sam-I-am and Trainer Tracey. I might just get my a** over that pass 🙂

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