Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Sat-Tue: 105 miles

Yee-haw. I rode with bare ears -- as opposed to bear ears -- this morning for the first time since it got cold here back in ... what was that, August?
And if you saw me on the way home, I'll point out that no, that blinding reflection was NOT from Illuminite leg warmers. That was from my bare white legs. (Not bear white legs, nor white bear legs.)
Yes, I pretended it was warm. This February thaw after the last many miserable weeks can do that: It got up to about 58, so I acted stupid. It felt pretty good, actually.
By the time I got home, the sun had been down awhile and I was still enjoying the ride, but frankly, my white bear legs were probably getting a bit chilled.
Yes, this is a time for self-delusion, soon followed by cold reality.
After only a few years of serious riding, I recognize a pattern: I ride alone a lot when other people aren't riding, then start telling myself I'm starting to feel some fitness. Maybe I'll go out and do some intervals at 97% of my LT or climb some hills and think they seem easier than I remember.
Then comes the reality check: I ride with other guys. And they smash me.
The last couple years, that bothered me. This year, my expectations and goals are low and July-oriented.
So when I got punked on Saturday, it wasn't a surprise or a disappointment.
A bunch of Cat 2-3 riders humored me by letting me tag along on an LSD ride to Burton and back. No problem for the first 35 minutes. Then we hit the climbs. Not even long or steep ones. Just the climb up the bricks, and then out of Chagrin Falls. Here I am, trying to hang onto Chris S's wheel while he cranks a bit too vigorously up those hills, and I'm watching my HR creep up, up and up some more, t0 95% of max. Chris is still chatting away, not realizing I've faded to 50 feet back, then 75 feet ...
Then, after a few more rollers on Music, we came to Munn and I was done. Well, I could've made it to Burton, but then on the way home, I'd be holding everyone up, running at the red line while they're getting bored. Nobody would've enjoyed that, and I might have actually cried when we got to Chagrin River Rd. and started up the climb up the other side of the valley.
So I peeled off. Kept riding, but did it alone.
That's what passes for "bad" news. The good news is that I rode for almost 3 hrs. and put in 46 miles -- pretty long for me at this time of year.
I followed that up with another 40+ miles on Monday: almost 16 on the way to work, 17 at lunch and then about 8 home.

... Maybe someday soon I'll start putting thought into these posts again. But I do too much of that at work, and frankly, I'm stick of it. Tonight I put new brakes on my commuter/beater. It was enjoyable. Maybe I should go to work in a bike shop ...

1 comment:

JC Sell said...

So now you know how I feel!

Just got back into it this week.

See ya around. JC