Training For The Farm To Fork Fondo Hills

Although I have one more race on my spring calendar, I’m turning my attention to cycling and getting ready for the Pennsylvania Dutch Farm to Fork Fondo on July 29. We had so much fun last year, we signed up early this year. We even booked a room at the rustic Manor View Inn again because the across-the-road convenience and country hospitality definitely outweighed the bare-bones amenities. 

I’m going back for another whoopie pie! 
Use GOT2RUN4ME to save 10% by June 1.

While I loved the  whole event and particularly enjoyed the farm-fresh food at the rest stops, I have not forgotten how tough those Lancaster hills were.

 Training For The Farm To Fork Fondo Hills

When several women in my Moms Run This Town group–including Deborah–started talking about a hilly group ride sponsored by a local bike shop, I was intrigued, but my spring races and business trips kept me away. This weekend I had no excuses, so I signed up and showed up–battling nerves that rivaled my worse pre-race jitters.

I arrived at Conte’s Bike Shop early, and introduced myself to the person who would be leading (or “sweeping”) the ride. There was a small group of riders with a few more men than women, and I was the only “first timer.” The Conte’s guy put me at ease, and my friend Erin assured me I could handle the hills.

We wound through Falls Church and McLean, taking so many turns and making so many loops, I couldn’t even retrace our route with a map. Many of the roads had bike lanes, and most cars passed us nicely–except one sports car with a bike on its roof! 

What about the hills, you ask? Garmin says we climbed about 1800 feet during our 21.5 mile ride, and many of the hills rivaled the ones we faced in Lancaster. 

I got over my biggest fear–falling over while clipped in and climbing a steep hill–when it happened, right at that little lollipop loop. I’d like to say that only my ego was bruised, but a welt started forming just above my knee almost right away. (And, since no one made a big deal about my fall and that hill is notorious, I only felt self-conscious for a few seconds.)

Thanks to Erin for getting me out to ride!

After the ride, Conte’s offered us coffee and bagels–I was ravenous–and encouragement to come back. While Deborah and Erin have promised that the hills do get easier, I know it will be a while before I can face them with confidence. Until then I will have to face down my fears and remember I Can Do Hard Things!

Weekly Wrap 

I’m linking up with  Holly and Tricia for the Weekly Wrap and joining Courtney‘s Training Recap link up.

It’s hard to believe the GW Parkway Classic was just last weekend. I had such a busy week–including an overnight busingess trip to Chicago! 

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I shared more pictures from Chicago in my Runfessions post here.

Weekly Wrap
Monday: Indoor Cycling.
Tuesday: Strength Training 
Wednesday: OTF
Thursday: 6.5 mi run in Chicago!
Friday: Core Power Yoga
Saturday: 21.5 mi bike ride
Sunday: 4.3 mi easy run

How do you convince yourself to do really hard workouts? 

Please join us for the Ultimate Coffee Date on Saturday–I’ll be showing off our new kitchen!

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37 Responses to Training For The Farm To Fork Fondo Hills

  1. Ummm…did just that today! I always remind myself of how badly I’ll feel if I don’t workout?

    I hope your knee is ok!
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…The No Pressure, No Marathon Training PlanMy Profile

  2. You can do hard things! We all can and it feels really amazing when we do. This ride has really helped to boost my confidence and my performance on the bike. Hope to do it w you soon!

  3. HoHo Runs says:

    Trust me, there was a lot of self talk going on to convince me to get out in the steam bath we had three days straight. So humbling. Teresa (Fabulous at Fifty) and I tried to schedule one of the Alabama Backroad rides but couldn’t get our Spring dates worked out. We’ve pushed it to later in the year. I’m afraid it will be very warm though. They do sound like fun events. Thanks for linking, Coco!

  4. I’m thinking about signing up for a Grand Fondo in our area. My husband is the cyclist in our family and I’m just a wannabe but I’m loving it! I’ve yet to get any fancy gear so for now it’s just normal sneakers when I ride by bike – no clipping in or out! However, once I get to that stage, I’m sure it’s going to be interesting!

  5. How great that you’re going to do the Grand Fondo again! You can do hard things! 🙂
    Michelle @ Running with Attitude recently posted…Weekly Wrap: Goals, Decisions & StrideBoxMy Profile

  6. I remember the Fondo race from last year…sounds tough!!! I’d like to do more cycling, but running is definitely my focus and requires the bulk of time. You do so much cross-training…you’re my idol 😉
    Kimberly Hatting recently posted…The NonStop Running ContinuesMy Profile

  7. Marcia says:

    I love that you did this Grand Fondo! Those hills definitely sound intimidating and I’m glad your fall wasn’t worse. I need to do some rides like that to build cycling confidence!
    Marcia recently posted…Another Month Bites the DustMy Profile

  8. PA is sooooo hilly. But beautiful.

    Good for you for joining in in the group ride!
    Judy @ Chocolaterunsjudy recently posted…Half #16, State#14: 4/24- 30 Weekly WrapMy Profile

  9. Carla says:

    you seem to ALWAYS be able to convince you 🙂
    Me? Im about 50/50 these days for sure…
    Carla recently posted…My experience with an intuitive reading.My Profile

  10. Kimberly G says:

    I’m surprised at how hilly it can be in PA. I did the Runner’s World 5K, 10K and half marathon in PA back in 2015 and it was super hilly, but pretty!

    I hope that your knee is doing better!
    Kimberly G recently posted…Airbnb Brooklyn Half Marathon Training Recap – Week 9My Profile

  11. Rachel says:

    Sounds like a fun challenge! I don’t have a road bike so I’ve never clipped in but that would be one of my biggest fears as well. Eek! Glad you made it through — hope that knee is ok!
    Rachel recently posted…Zingy Grilled Portobello BurgersMy Profile

  12. Holy hills, batman! Good on you for going for it and conquering them!

  13. Lesley says:

    I had family in Pennsylvania and I do remember how hilly it was when we were driving there. Lancaster is deep in my family tree since I have Amish ancestors.

  14. Shathiso says:

    Well done for going for it. Really impressed with your efforts. Hope your knee is doing better!

  15. Great job on that bike ride!! I need to buy a new bike and ride some. I really enjoy it. The weather was so hot over the weekend and I had a sinus headache so missed my last longish run before my half this weekend. I got two good long runs in so I think I will be okay.

  16. well done! And kudos to handling your fall well – it sounds like you were with a great, supportive group!

  17. Christine says:

    I’m originally from Lancaster, Pa. Yep, it’s hilly. For some reason lots of people who aren’t from there think it’s flat, but it’s definitely not! However, it’s not anywhere nearly as hilly as Charlotte, NC! When I moved from Lancaster to Charlotte, the hills were so much crazier! Now I live in Charleston. The flatlands. I miss hills! (I know, I’m crazy to say that, but it’s true.)

  18. Elle says:

    This sounds like such a fun time. I think a group ride would be great! That map looks very complicated.

  19. Nice that you’ll be doing the Lancaster ride again this year! It looks so fun…if only I had a bike of mine own to join in…though I’m sure the hills would kill me!

    It’s nice having a running coach because she’ll put these tough workouts on my plan so I have no choice, ha!

  20. I remember reading your recap about the bike ride last year. My husband would love for us to do a few of those types of bikes rides so I may be picking your brain soon. 🙂
    Debbie @ Deb Runs recently posted…Listening To My Gut Instinct Paid Off… AgainMy Profile

  21. I hope your knee is ok? I would be nervous with my feet clipped in too- that one would be tough for me especially in that hilly environment! You are a tough cookie!
    Mary Beth Jackson recently posted…I am just putzing around! Weekly wrapMy Profile

  22. Wow, those hills sound intense! Great job making completing the ride. I would be scared of falling too! Hope your knee is ok!
    Lisa @ Mile by Mile recently posted…Springtime Is For RunningMy Profile

  23. When I’m struggling to find motivation, I remind myself that I’ll be really disappointed in myself if I don’t head out for the workout. A difficult workout is better than a missed workout.
    Kathryn @ Dancing to Running recently posted…May 2017 GoalsMy Profile

  24. Gina says:

    I have never been on a road bike! Sounds like you had a great time! Here’s to hoping your knee heals fast!
    Gina recently posted…It Takes An ArmyMy Profile

  25. Stacey says:

    I convince myself to do hard workouts with a promise of a coffee treat reward after it’s finished! I can’t wait to hear about your Farm to Fork Fondo experience-the Lancaster ride is definitely on my list of things to do!

  26. My trainer will slip up every once in awhile and ask me what I’d like to work on and while at first, I’d pick easy things, I’ve been picking things that are hard for me. I know if I work on the hard stuff they will become easier!
    I bitch and complain but she always tells me, this was your idea, ya know!
    Tricia @ Misssippipiddlin recently posted…Kentucky Derby Mini Marathon 2017My Profile

  27. Excellent post, Coco! Your posts are so motivational and inspirational!

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