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

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Back To The Future

Our Prattville Hill group had a good outing on Thursday after work. I got pensive emails and texts from other riders concerning the likelihood of T-Storms interfering with ride plans, but decided to just show up. If it was raining when I got there, I'd go home, otherwise, we would ride. The weather worked out fine and we had a good outing on one of the prettier circuits we use. When we were done, I felt good. A couple of the guys asked about my Saturday plans and I said I'd like to do another metric. It sounded good to them, and so we met yesterday at the old John Hall Store in remote Cecil, AL and rode for 62.5 miles. As on Monday, we encountered high humidity with heavy overcast early, giving way to bright Sun and scorching heat later. A time or two we came upon an area that had just been rained on, and was now in bright Sun. The steam coming off the pavement was incredibly stifling. Of course it's hot in Alabama in June.
  Sweat was a real issue on this ride, and I chose not to wear a cap under the helmet. Better ventilation that way, and I pressed the helmet down a few times to squeeze the water out of the padding as we went along. I wore a Rivendell/Woolistic jersey and it handled being drenched quote well. Rivendell's Boosucker shorts over a pair of ZOIC liners handled things down below as well. Boosuckers are bamboo seersucker and handle being soaked way better than cotton does. I had Defeet wool socks and Vetruvian sneakers on and they were very comfortable on MKS Sylvan touring pedals. Also, I didn't walk like a duck off the bike.
  We made 3 store stops and they were all needed. The 2 bottles I could carry aboard Elrond (a '95 Rivendell Road) would not begin to handle my re-supply needs. I ended up getting 4 bottles on the road plus the 2 I brought. Each had 1/4 tsp of salt added. That's about 2 oz of fluid/salt solution for each mile ridden. It worked as nary a cramp showed up. I also ate a breakfast cereal bar at each rest and added some salted peanuts at two of them.
  The route featured a range of pavement and continual rollers, except for the middle 5 miles which had 4 actual hills to climb. Not bad though and less climbing than on Monday's ride. The new Pascenti Pari-Moto tires are outstanding. This is the 2d outing on them and they were really comfortable, track well in corners, and are fast over rough stuff. I couldn't stay with the two fastest riders very long. Pace lining was good when they were at 17 - 19, but when they kicked it up to 20 - 22, I got winded quickly trying to stay with them. They spent most of the day at 20+, so I generally rode solo. Coming in towards the end of the ride, one rider was feeling a bit spent, so I got in front of him and offered to pull. He was happy to accept and we cruised in the final 4 - 5 miles at 15. Overall, I had a 16 avg, which is also what I had in the hills on Thursday. I know that sounds slow to the rest of you all, but it's fast for me. Recent years have seen me peg 13 - 15 as my range and that has been what I average consistently. When we started doing hills this season, I was in the 13.5 area. 16 is what I was doing back 5 years ago, and it is very satisfying to be able to get there again. I was not sure I ever would. Not just that, but after neither ride was I worn out and ready to nap. That's different too. It's taken a year of diet and exercise to get to this point, and when something takes time and effort, it is just appreciated a little more.
  So, climbing is better for me than it was, but I still need to work on getting my level pace up a tick or two. After the ride and a shower and lunch, I polished up today's Sunday school lesson. (I'm beginning a 6 week section on Covenant Theology. Then I get a 6 week break!) When that was done, there was still time and interest in bike maintenance, so I cleaned and oiled the chains, brakes, and derailleurs of 3 bikes. Capped the day off by sitting on the back porch and watching a T-Storm move in later on before heading on in to bed. Just a really good Saturday.

No comments:

Blog Archive

The Pace Line