Monday, April 23, 2012


     I had good intentions: come home from The Netherlands and get on the bike.  Didn't happen.  Other than the 1.5 mile ride to the gas station, the bike stayed in the garage.  I managed to get to the gym for Body Flow on Tuesday, that wiped me out (actually the weight work-out before Body Flow did it), and spin class on Friday, so it wasn't like I'd become a couch potato.  Saturday was gorgeous, but a tad windy and rather than ride I opted to dig four holes and plant three trees (the nursery sold the other tree before I could get back to it).  The trees had been on the agenda for quite awhile and it was either now or wait 'til next year.
     So, Sunday, three weeks after my last ride, became the day to start catching up.  My Sunday "360 ride" begins (usually) 10 minutes before sunrise, in this case 6:35am.  I glanced at the thermometer as I left the house: 48 degrees, and went back for another layer on my chest.  The flashing lights at Big Lots, where I start, showed a comforting 57 degrees.  Two things: I was running late, and "wheels down" didn't happen until 6:45am; and I know that seven minutes into the ride a series of ups and downs will drop the temperature at least ten degrees.  Nevertheless, I left the wind jacket in the car and went with the long sleeve undershirt and jersey, and of course, tights.
     Just because I started at sunrise didn't mean I had warming rays hitting my back.  What with the hills, it took 37 minutes before the sun actually got to my body.  No wind.  Body working smoothly, if somewhat weak.  I felt great, albeit a gear or two short.  At the turn onto Bee Cave Road, I had lost five minutes (off average time), but didn't feel stressed about it.  For one thing, I hadn't touched the bike (gas station ride notwithstanding) since State Finals on the 1st.  That meant I had not replaced the aerobars.  My water bottle holder broke as I readied to start, forcing me to put the bottle in my Camelbak, which meant an additional stop to change bottles.  Bottom line: I knew at the beginning that my time would be less than average, so relaxed and enjoyed the ride.
You know a fun place when you see it
Even though the sun came up, the wind didn't.  Flags were limp the whole morning.  The best part of today's ride was how good the legs felt.  Earlier in the year, there was always something missing.  Yesterday I had "good sensations" (as the pros say).  Hopefully, they will stay that way as I try to catch up on missed mileage.

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