Trev and I in Folsom

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Nice ride today. A bit cold, but had a nice pace and great conversation. Looking forward to more rides in the new year.


On the ride

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Stopped at Folsom Bike for warmth and shopping.

Sick but Healthy

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Had to put my rides on hold this weekend. I have a cold and sore throat. Nevertheless, I’m going to try my typical 50 mile ride to Beals Point with my friend Trev. I hope that I’m not too slow, but know I won’t be able to do my typical time. If I can average 15 mph and do it in 3.5 hours, I’ll be pretty happy.

Last night was Davey’s birthday, and we ate lots of rich, expensive food and drank rich, expensive alcohol. So I need to burn those calories off!!

Speaking of healthy, I’m very pleased that, though I’ve been slacking a tiny bit on my training (doing only about 110 miles per week), I’ve not gained any weight and hover at about 173 lbs. My goal by the end of winter is to lose another 10 lbs. I hope that weighing about 160 will help my speed and overall fitness.

But today is all about having a nice ride with a friend, and burning a few unneeded calories.

See you on the trail!

Ride from Guerneville to Duncan Mills

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22 miles, 1 hour 10 minutes, AVS 18.1 mph, MXS 28 mph. 55 deg F. I turned around after 11 miles because I felt like I was going down hill all the way to Duncan Mills and was afraid the return trip would be hard — turned out that was wrong. Lol.

Today’s Ride

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Went on a 50 mile ride to Beals Point and back…my standard ride. I meant to take a picture of the mistletoe which adorns the trees in several areas, but I couldn’t bring myself to stop.

It was cold (about 62° F when I left and about 55° F when I returned) and clear, but very windy. The trail was strewn with leave and branches which crunched under my tires sometimes pleasantly, sometimes disturbingly. There were not many other riders out — maybe there was too much cross- and head-winds for most riders.

But my time was on-par with my average times. I did the 52 miles in just about 3 hours, with an average speed of 16.5 mph (max 33 mph).

I’m planning on riding 30 milers on Sunday and Monday, for a total weekend ride of 110 miles. I hope I can make the time to do so.

Speed: the Darker Side

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The inner competitor in my wants to go fast. Really fast. My goal is to keep up with the racers who train on my regular routes. They seem to average about 21 mph on the flats, and can smoke me on the hills.

I currently can maintain a nice pace at 17 to 18 mph on the flats (in the top 2/3 of the ride, anyway), and tend to average about 16 mph on the ride as a whole (including up hills at 10 to 12 mph, and down hills at 25 to 40 mph).

Of course its always easier to go faster during a group ride than by myself, and on a shorter ride than on a longer one. On such rides, I can top out at 18 to 19 mph, if I really push myself.

While I’m looking forward to the challenge of achieving my speed goal (and will post on how I plan on achieving it), I wanted to take a look at why I wanted to achieve that goal.

First, I’m naturally competitive in athletics; when I try something, I want to be best at it. However, this cuts both ways. Its good to get me motivated to keep trying, but mentally I don’t like competition, always preferring cooperation. Because my nature and my mind are at odds, I can convince myself to turn away from an activity when I think I’m getting too fierce. (For instance, when I was younger, I once ripped a basketball out of the hands of a coworker, and felt so bad about it that I never played basketball again!)

Second, I am really only as good as I am. That means riding with superior riders will only get me so much of a boost — I’m not the sort of rider who can push himself to the limit. This can be discouraging, especially when riders who I thought weren’t as good smoke me on hills, or pull out of a straightaway barely panting.

Third, I hate the idea of being a show off, but can’t help it! When I ride with my mates, the inner beast wants to be the first to the next rest stop, and I have to tame him. Part of the point of the ride is the group effort, riding together for fun and companionship. Another part is exercise, so I do like to get my heart rate up. Its a delicate balance to get the right ride in.

The AIDS Lifecycle will challenging at 7 days and 545 miles. Getting up to speed will take a lot of effort, but remembering why I’m there in the first place (for fun and to be a supportive team member) will also be challenging.

At Wild Wrangler Saloon

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Sent from my iPhone.