Sunday, April 3, 2011

4 down, 1 to go... in 4 days in row of riding, with 1 more to go.

I started things off last Thursday morning...I start work at 11:00 on Thursdays, so I squeezed in a 90 minute ride before work, heading up towards the park and tackling some climbing on Notch road. Good way to start the day.

Friday, I took the afternoon off work and put in 3 hours. It was a brutal ride because the wind was relentless. I planned my ride to start off heading into the wind, but that meant about 1.5 hours of riding into a stiff North-West Big Ring would say "Fugg me!!!" I was SO looking forward to the part of my loop where I would make a right hand turn towards the East and have the wind at my back. Even with a tailwind, I didn't manage any kind of remarkable cruising speed because of the hurt the wind has put on me. Right towards the end of my ride, my rear wheel flatted, one of those quick "pfffffft!!!!" followed by a loud "whoosh!!!!" and then flat in about 2 seconds. My tire had a nice gash in the sidewall, but luckily I had some trusty Park tire boot with me (never leave home without it!). It was a bittersweeet demise for my was a brand new tire, a Bontrager R2 25c, but inflated, it only measures 23c. So it sucked that it was a new tire, but it wasn't a big loss since it wasn't what I really wanted in the first place.

This motley crew of wild turkeys was outside a house just off Carling Ave. I rode by here to check out the bike path, which is still covered with patchy snow.

Saturday, Jamie hooked me up with a ride out to Rockland to re-con the course for next weekend's Rockland-Clarence Classic. We picked up Matt and met up with 8 other riders at the ubiquitous Rockland landmark...Wal-Mart. I did this race last year on my road bike (with a 28c up front and a 25c in the rear), so I decided to ride my cross bike with 28's and see how I'd fare. I didn't feel beat up at the end of the ride like I did last year, probably due to a more upright position on my cross bike and a lower average speed. However, the hurt was put on due to the previous day's ride, and once again, the wind. On quite a few occasions I'd lose touch with the lead group, and then suddenly be confronted with an insurmountable gap, pedaling as hard as I could and going nowhere fast, only to be scooped up by the trailing group. It also made me realize what a winter of inactivity does to one's fitness. I have to accept that next weekend's "race" will be more of a "ride". However, it's also early in the season with plenty more riding to be had.

Today was an easy 90 minute recovery spin. Before heading out, I really didn't feel like riding at all...I was tired and sore, but once out on the bike, I felt fine, and enjoyed the sun and brisk temps.

 Yup, that's a hockey net in the pic. Winter just seems to be holding on with everything it's got.

Tomorrow I have the day off, so I'm gonna put in one more ride and then be done with this little "training block". The only downside is the forecast....cold, wind and rain. I was hoping to put in 4 hours, but that might get shortened depending on what the weather ends up doing.

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