All kinds of states

The picture's fairly explanatory really. I rode to New South Wales today. (Just from the Gold Coast. Not from Brisbane.)

Even so, it was another long day. Training was an open water swim followed by a 130k ride... topped and tailed by an hour's drive.

Geographically, I may only have covered two states, but emotionally, I was in all kinds of states.

We started with an open water swim at  Lake Hugh Muntz, a freshwater lake tucked away at Mermaid Waters on the Gold Coast. An open water swim had seemed like a good idea when KKB first mentioned it a few weeks ago. Since then, though, it's gotten cold. This morning, when we arrived at the lake with the temperature barely in double figures, it seemed like a very bad idea.

We wiggled our way into our wetsuits. This served quite a warm up in itself. Whenever I look at my wetsuit, which looks like it was made for a Barbie doll, I wonder how on earth I come close to fitting in it.

I worked myself into a bit of a state just thinking about this. I felt constricted in the tight fitting neoprene. As we waddled down to the water, I found it difficult to breathe, and wondered how I would cope in the water. My cold feet stung with every footfall on the concrete path. My hands and face started feeling a little numb with the cold.

I don't know what had possessed me. I was preoccupied with all the negatives. By the time we got to the steps down to the water, I was incapable of focusing on the task at hand. It took me ten minutes or so to calm down enough to launch myself into the cool, still water and start swimming.

We stroked through what we estimated was 2.5Kms. (One of the big complaints I have about my Garmin 310XT is that it's marketed as a triathlete's Garmin, but doesn't work in water.... what the?).

After a quick change in the car park we got on the bikes to ride up through Springbrook, down through Natural Bridge. I just wasn't feeling it today, and even KKB's company didn't seem to help that much.

"How are you going?" he asked me when we stopped to refill drinks.

"OK. No, not really. I'm really not feeling great today", I responded like a resentful teenager.

"What about having me here, doesn't that help?" Nice sentiment, right, especially since we don't ride together much at all.

"Nup. Actually my head hurts. Got any Nurofen?"

A couple of Ks up the road, after KKB had ridden off into the sunshine, I really regretted this. Having him with me did help. It was actually a really nice way to spend a day, enjoying beautiful scenery with your husband.

Good work, Athletic Powerhouse. KKB isn't going to wait for you now. I felt alone and deserted, given I was out in the middle of nowhere and all. I tried to concentrate on the task at hand, continuing up the climb over the Queensland / NSW border, then descended into the Numinbah Valley. When I got to Chillingham to refill my drinks, I despaired at the fact that KKB really wasn't around; until I saw him stopped at the local shop, downing a pie and a can of Coke. Yes!

From here we rode together most of the way through the cane fields towards Murwillumbah, back up over Terranora, then back down to the hustle and bustle of the Gold Coast proper.

I think we were both in the same state of exhaustion when we got back to the car. We packed the bikes into the back of the car in what seemed like record time, before piling in and settling in for the drive home.

Another long day over. Hallelujah to that.

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