Finally the weather and my cycling times have decided to cooperate with each other. My Thursday ride plan was to cover about 25-30 miles depending how long it took for me to get out and on the road. Thursday night ended up being a great ride made slightly difficult by the weariness in my legs from a hard training phase. By the end of my ride on Thursday night I hit a new mile stone in my one day distance and in my weekly riding total. I would love to say it was easy, but two hours of going up and down hills had some pretty good challenges in the end. Of course the most important question can be answered… Did I have Fun??? I give it a resounding YES!
Early in the week I had ridden a long evening ride on Tuesday in a good amount of rain(read it here. The goal is to get the legs ready for riding the 37 miles in my upcoming tour de cure Atlanta event (Only 8 days left to donate: donate here). I had intended to at least shoot for the 65 mile or 100 mile distance, but at the reality check thrown by my wife, I realize I would be smarter to go for a shorter distance. I further realize now that 37 miles will be challenging enough at this point in my cycling abilities. Of course this means I will be working to push my endurance to get to the 100 or 65 mile levels, it will just take some time.
Weather wise, the evening was perfect. Not too humid or hot and it remained dry. If I could define my ideal cycling weather this would be at the top of perfect riding days. Of course I discovered I was not alone in my appreciation of the weather and I found bugs splatting into my ears, arms and face as I went whizzing by. At first it was a bit disconcerting, but eventually I adapted and just accepted the onslaught of bugs.
When I started my ride I had an hour of solid sunshine before evening twilight would creep in. I decided to try a Gu Rocktane and I will say it was disgusting. I rode on for about twelve miles before I took another gel, a cliff shots citrus flavor. This combination worked well til I hit the 19 mile mark. I started to feel fatigue and my speed slowed way down. Oddly though, when I hit mile 21 or so, I all of a sudden was hit with a huge burst of energy. My legs felt less tired and I found my speed had increased again, the power in my legs returned. Which one of the gels was responsible, I do not know. I need to play more with my timing and maybe taking a gel closer to 10 miles and then again at 16 miles, just to keep up the energy levels. As I said, this still needs some more experimentation, but I think closer intervals would suffice better. I am now a big fan of Gu and Cliff gels though.
I finished this ride in the small town of white while it was pitch black. It felt cool cycling through a small town at night armed with nothing more than my bike, tail light and headlight. In the end this was a great ride that pushed my already worn and sore legs a bit further. For the first time I have ridden over 45 miles for the week and I still might get more miles in by the end of the week. Most importantly its fun and I am loving the cycling life. Til next time.
- 27% Chance of Rain… My Evening Ride (chatterdoesfitness.wordpress.com)
- One Very Wet Weekend… Trained Anways (chatterdoesfitness.wordpress.com)
- The ‘And Then Some’ Distance Principle (chatterdoesfitness.wordpress.com)
- All Dressed Up and Nowhere To Go! (chatterdoesfitness.wordpress.com)
- 5 Weeks To Tour De Cure Ride – Week 5 And Counting Goals (chatterdoesfitness.wordpress.com)