Bike to Work, day 74: Ouch

August 19, 2008

I was just shy of shattering my record this morning:

26:14, 6.5mi
67ºF, Odo 1954mi
avg 14.9mph,  max 25.2mph

My Kenpo uniform is quite heavy.  I’ll be carrying it up to Manchester after work today.

Extra weight, probably not enough real food or water, and a strong headwind made today’s ride to Manchester brutal.  Oh wait, I forgot 100 miles Saturday, 45 Monday, and then today’s 31.  My legs were not strong today.

1:38:44, 24.7mi
78ºF, Odo 1979mi
avg 15.0mph, max 32.3mph

Half way home my back tire flattened out.  You could think this was the cap on a bad day, but no.  No, this was a great moment in my day, because I just kept walking.  I don’t even know why at first.  But then I saw a beautiful thing: a farm stand.  I bought some fresh fruit (a peach and some chopped pineapple) and then sat down to tackle my flat.  I set to fixing it slowly, without letting myself get frustrated.  So the wind was constantly in my face, so my legs had nothing in them, so the traffic is heavy, so what?  This I can control, and it will be relaxed and enjoyable.

It was the best pineapple I’ve ever tasted.  Ever.  I ate chunks between each step, keeping my spirits up and the work easy.  What a wonderful way to turn a bad experience into the best part of my day.

Though this is not my first flat, it is the first time I’ve used my CO2 pump.  The stem frosted over and the tire was inflated in seconds.  So cool!

The rest of the ride was painful, and painfuly slow.  I threw in the towel at 25 miles to use the bathroom and grab a bite to eat and a ride back to my car (about 5 more miles across town).  Thank God for family.

Tomorrow morning we’ll see how badly my leg hurts and judge weather or not I ride to work.  We sparred at karate, and took a full on kick to the shin.  If it’s just sore but not injured I’ll ride on it.

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Bike to Work, day 73

August 18, 2008

21:05, 6.1mi
63ºF, Odo 1903mi
avg 17.4mph, max 27.7mph

My cyclometer was seated but not reading the wheelspin, so I had to make an adjustment on the road.  Another half a mile would definitely increase my ride time for the morning, up into 22 or more.  I’m not upset, Saturday’s Century was amazing!

I put the pedal down on my way home, kept my cadence up, kept my speed up, and basically flew home.  It’s not a record but it’s a damn good time:

19:45, 6.6mi
88ºF, Odo 1910mi
avg 20.0mph, max 38.8mph

Hopefully I can make the 6pm group ride with the Granite State Wheelmen.  Am I up for 16-17mph for 25-35 miles?  You bet I am!

I got lost, but managed to show up before the group left.  It should have been 5 miles there, but I did a bit more than that.  The following are as accurate as I can remember of the ride we did:

1h22m, 24mi, 79ºF
avg 17.9mph, max 32.5mph

Riding in a group is a tremendous amount of fun.  First of all, there’s the exhilaration of staring at another man’s bottom as you draft behind him, and attempt not to hit any *surprise* potholes which you likely will not be able to avoid.  Then, there’s the bright eyed wonder of watching your best effort to stay at the head of the pack be dashed by a guy on a recumbent bicycle, who makes passing you look far too easy.  It was incredibly beneficial to be humbled by people much older than myself.  This last bit is true, actually.

In honesty, I really enjoyed myself.  I found out that there really are a ton of other people out there as crazy as I am, and that’s always fun.  It was nice to chat with other people who ride as a workout, or people who used to race, or just chat about cycling.  There are only a few more rides this season.  Including one on Wednesdays.  What fun!

My cyclometer is now reading an impressive 1948 miles.  I will be breaking Two Thousand Miles this week.  Awesome!