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

Saturday, January 4, 2014

It's a New Day

And a new year. Two years into a plant strong diet and Sharon & I are both very pleased with it. You know, I wonder if people have trouble cubby holing me. I eat plants, wear wool, ride a bike, but I'm not a liberal. I'm not far right of center either, but I am to the right. I believe in God, exercising my mind, rather than my texting thumbs, and think yes, I AM my brother's keeper.

So far, not so bad on the resolution front. I have been starting the days with prayer, need to remember to end them that way too. Reading the McChyne (or M'Chyne) plan and on track. Reading a lot more than I have been generally, and enjoying it. reading BOOKS that is, not FOX, CNN, or USA Today headlines. Not riding with eyes glued to the Garmin! It's much nicer to look around and just ride how I feel. Two rides in 4 days to start the year too! Today's was a cold and hilly affair, but it was sooo good to get out and pedal.

Every time I ride the Rivendell Road, I am struck anew at how great it feels underneath me as I go along. It is certainly more capable than I am as a rider, but it never seems disappointed to be taken out for some miles. It has a frame made of tubing no one uses anymore, with an interesting combination of relaxed seat tube angle and long chain stays for comfort and steep head tube angle and shallow fork rake for very quick handling. Despite the highly responsive steering, it pedals no hands easily. A low bottom bracket gives very secure leans in high speed turns and the thing will take racks and fenders too, should I ever be so inclined.

Shortly after this bike was made (1995), Rivendell morphed it to the "Road Standard" which is a little different bike, with a sloping top tube and extended head tube to get the handle bars up high. The standard Mine has a level top tube and regular head tube, and is an in-between size not made anymore, 54.5 cm. With 650B wheels, it fits me just right. For the past 4 years, it has been the bike I ride the most.

Today's ride was a typical Winter prep, base miles, get some hills kind of outing. Ray (always fit and fast), Max (looking better than he claimed he was doing - but then cyclists are famous for understating their condition), and Therese (poor gal, on a great old lugged steel Specialized, but one lacking a small ring or a large cog. She has a 53/39 and a 12 - 25 or so) joined me. Therese did not find joy on our climbs, but she did like the ride. Ray found her rear tire and then found the ground, but he and his bike seemed none the worse for wear, and Max was Max, plugging effortlessly along, usually out in front.

It was Sunny for most of the ride, although it clouded later on. We all did okay on the layering and no one complained too much about being cold. Ever since I saw Miele of the DC Randonneurs (?) do a cold Novemeber 300K in wool socks and open sandals, I have been wearing the same thing. Feet were fine today too. My legs reminded me that they need work, and would appreciate if my waistline would also get some attention. yeah, yeah, I know.

Well, 2014 is here and so far, so good. 2013 was my 2d lowest ride mile total since I started keeping records in 2003. Probably more miles than the 1st and 2d year of riding, '01 & '02 though. 2014 could be a rebound year!


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