Monday, April 15, 2013


Last evening we had a fantastic dinner at "Olive and Ivy", an uber trendy Scottsdale restaurant with, as someone put it, a "happening vibe". Although we only had reservations for four persons, when everyone decided that they wanted to eat there, Virginia used her finest negotiation skills to get us an indoor table for six and an outdoor table for four, in a fully booked restaurant.  Thank you Virginia!

The food was amazing, all the way from our artichoke heart, and hummus appetizers, to entrees of salmon, sweet potato ravioli, and wild mushroom pasta.  Bridget's birthday treat (see photo at end of day 6) was a chocolate and peanut butter ice cream bar.

This morning, our last day in Arizona, 9 tired cyclists dragged themselves out of bed and onto their bikes for an early start of 8 am, in an attempt to beat the heat.  One of the great things about this bike camp is that we have been able to start riding from the resort every day.  We set off and did about 20 kms to a small hill, where we did hill climbing drills while Petrina coached and filmed us.  Two cyclists then headed back to the resort.

Bridgette, Virginia, Sandi, Christine, Annie, Carolyn, Jo, Kathy, and Donna

The remaining six of us did the same fun ride we did on Monday, minus the strong winds.  We rode to the end of Cave Creek Road, it winds through part of Tonto National Forest, with several challenging hairpin turns.  The riding certainly felt much easier than it did earlier in the week!

The sun was getting stronger, and  time was racing on, so several more cyclists decided to head back to the resort to finish packing, leaving just two of us with Petrina to complete an 80 km ride under a hot sun.  We pushed the pace on the remaining 30 km and upon arrival back at the resort, I immediately jumped into the pool to cool off (hence the flattering picture of me floating in the water).  Today was the hottest day yet, with a high of over 33 deg. C.

We had a little time at the resort pool, then we all jumped into the Canadian National Cycling Team van to go to Faster,  a unique bike store and training/recovery centre.  Earlier in the week, Virginia had a five hour bike fit there, complete with wind tunnel testing.  She has raved about her bike fit with alterations ever since, leading several of us to plan on getting it done next year. Yes, life circumstances permitting, we all plan on returning to Petrina's Cycling Centre Arizona bike camp next year!

Faster also has hot and cold recovery pools, as well as "compression legs", so we all rotated through the pools and legs during the afternoon. Petrina also sat down with us to review the videos she had taken of us during the week, using both her handlebar mounted camera, and handheld camera. A great afternoon to end with!

Following our time at Faster, we headed to a Mexican restaurant called Sol where we enjoyed more wonderful food, and two group members discovered that their "pico" (hot) dish was simply too pico to be eaten!  

Our last evening concluded with us madly stuffing our bike boxes in preparation for an early morning flight, leaving the resort at 4 am. Ugh.  Petrina will be driving us to the airport then, then returning later to pick up the two persons with later flights to take them to the airport.

See tomorrow's notes for concluding comments!

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