I needed a solo ride and told my husband that I was going out during our toddler's afternoon nap. He said that if I waited until after nap we could all go together. As much as I like our family bike rides, I needed to ride alone -- not just for practice, but for freedom, too.
And so I made it out on my own. I went up a long hill, much like the one on the race course, and I enjoyed sweating it out. I'm not sure that I could have made that whole thing with the trailer attached.
I got home just in time to go to a concert in the park with my family. I felt invigorated, relaxed, and happy to see my kids whose whines earlier in the afternoon were good incentive to go for a ride.