Mostly recaps of two wheeled rambles through the countryside, but sometimes thoughts on other things.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Almost Spring!

Although it was still below freezing yesterday morning, the sun was out and sky was blue. The cold weather wusses had posted a Club Lite ride for 10:00 AM, by which time above freezing air was forecast. I took advantage of the later start to enjoy a leisurely morning. Up early, my usual small pot of strong coffee, an exercise workout (nothing fancy, just 4 from high school days: sit, push, pull, and chin ups) and then breakfast. Still plenty of time to get bike clothes on and ride across town to the start location. The air was near 50F when I pulled out of the driveway and just above it when I parked the Yukon at the John Hall store in Cecil.

I assumed we'd have a big turnout, since this was really the first "nice" riding day in a long while. As it happened, only 6 of us were there. Michelle was getting a flying lesson in a friend's YAK. Here's sample picture, but not exact one she flew.

John C was out of town, Wendell was swamped with work, etc, etc. The faster folks had a ride posted at the same time in another location and I'm sure that some of the "switch hitters" chose to book it at 17 avg rather than our 14. We did have one new face on our ride yesterday. His name is Anthony and he is new to the area. I asked if he needed directions to the fast group's ride. Any guesses why?

Anthony mentioned that yes, he did in fact compete on a Cycling team back home in OK, and yes he is a licensed bike mechanic who worked out on the tour for a while, just to see what it was like, and so forth. With a cadence of around 100, He seemed to glide effortlessly in front of us, while his feet were a blur. Anthony works at the Shakespeare Festival building sets and so forth. (A great venue btw, excellent quality productions season after season if you've not visited it). Personally, I think he LOOKS a lot like Shakespeare myself...

The weather warmed through the afternoon as we rode, and I never needed the jacket that came along, rolled up in a L'il Loafer bag on the fork rack. John and Cathy R were our ride leaders and mapped out the 32 mile approximate box that includes a store store about 1/2 way on US 231. They have been doing a lot of camping and riding and both just enjoy their time on their bikes.  They are going back to Fontainebleau State Park in LA, ( ) to ride, camp, and volunteer at a BEER FEST. Now that sounds like a tough job, but someone has to do it.  They made a trip over there upon hearing how much I enjoyed my ride through there with Vince & Becky back last Memorial Day. Wish I could get away to go with them again.

Here they are with Jim R visible a little behind them. Jim asked about going to Mooresville in August to ride the Bike MS with me. I'm stoked at that idea! Jim is just about my ideal riding buddy (I've said this before) as we generally like the same pace, rest intervals, etc. And he's good company too. In case you want more info on THAT:

We were passed while resting out on the route by David O, Richard J and Bob C. Haven't seen them in a while and David looked really good. Stay upright on that bike, will ya David? We also saw hawks, quail and a befuddled looked possum sitting by the side of the road. Also the usual assortment of cattle and buzzards. I smelled the dead (recent roadkill) skunk a ways before I saw it. And a ways after I saw it too.

The breeze picked up a tad and we spent most of the return trip getting some added calorie burn by pulling into it. Roxy W, who had originally planned to ride with us but was a no show, happened to be at the cars upon our return. He had arrived late, after a wrong turn sent him back towards town, and had rambled on his own for close to 30 miles, hoping to catch us on a crisscross. He and I had thought about a 50 miler in lieu of the club 32 anyway, so the two of us set out on an extra loop, and that brought my total to 48 for the day with only 1607' of climbing. The terrain out that way is all gentle rollers with maybe 6% being the steepest climbing and only 1 or 2 of that grade to boot. I rode the Saluki and averaged 14.5 on it, which is what I average on anything I'm riding, to be honest. I seem to be climbing much better than I used to, but if anything, I am a mph or two slower than I was back in '06 or '07. No real reason I can put my finger on. It matters not a whit to me, as my enjoyment is certainly higher. I rode the 3+ hours at 85% of my supposed max cardio level, but didn't feel particularly tired afterward. I think the formula for max cardio (220- age) may not work for me. I'm still collecting data and I need to ride SLOWER on at least one ride and compare what working at 65% does for me to 85%. This with an eye to longer duration riding.

Also back in the parking lot, old riding acquaintance John Z was there. He was rehabbing a knee and had to be careful with how much information he divulged to his wife, who would probably rat him out to the Dr. He is not supposed to be riding at all..

So, John R, Roxy, and John Z all have new hardware. Inside. I KNEW we were getting to be an older crowd when out old debate, "Steel, Carbon or Titanium?" was about replacement body parts, not bike frames!

First beginner ride for the year is today after church at 2 PM. Three people have confirmed they are coming. 10 miles of slow flattish riding with emphases on bike safety, rules of the road, group ride etiquette. I'll ride to and from to get 12 extra miles.


No comments:

Blog Archive

The Pace Line