Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Bike Plans

5 Sept - Bike fitting at Spokes, Etc. My longest ride to date is 20.32 miles and all rides have resulted in sore wrists and hands. I don't want to aggravate my carpal tunnel and I need to increase my mileage (see below) so I'm letting the professionals figure out the best settings for me to be comfortable on my bike. Plus, since I purchased the bike from the shop, the fitting is free.

18 Sept - 2011 Backroads Century. Scott and I are signed up for the 30 mile trek and will be riding with L and J. I'm really looking forward to this even if I'm feeling daunted by the distance.

First week of October - Ravenstreet Beach Week on OBX. Scott and I are taking our bikes to the beach! The trails are paved and flat (glory hallelujah!) and follow Rte 12 up and down the island. I've been measuring the distances from the house to various destinations and they're all reachable: to heart of Duck - 5.25 miles, to Timbuk II - 7 miles, to historic Corolla Village & Currituck Beach lighthouse - 10.8 miles. All distances are one way and are totally do-able. I am practically spazzing out I'm so excited about cycling at the beach.

Monday, August 22, 2011

I do not think that word means what you think it means

When Scott got home from his afternoon activities on Sunday, I talked him into a "short" bike ride with me. I've decided that my favorite time to be on the W&OD is after 5pm on the weekends. Most of the families with dogs, the Lance Armstrong wannabes, and the dawdlers have finished their excursions and the trail is mostly clear. We rode up to Carolina Bros BBQ at Ashburn road (5 miles) and took a break. After I caught a second wind, we hopped back on the bikes and headed for Leesburg. We got into the city limits and rode until mile post 32.5 where we turned around and headed back to Carolina Bros for another break.

We were just past Loudoun County parkway (about mile 17) when my legs decided they'd had enough. I fought through the wall and pushed myself over Rte 28, under Church, and into our neighborhood. My legs felt like jelly and I was huffing and puffing, but I did it. And we did it really fast, for us anyway. According to my tracker, we rode 20 miles in an hour-forty, averaging 12 mph. I need more training, though, before the Backroads Century next month. We're biking the 30 mile "extended quarter century" this time. I bet we're up to a full century by next year. Or at least the metric century.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My love for Spokes knows no bounds

I pushed Rose to the service desk and she was patched up in less than twenty minutes and for no charge. They also gave me a new reflector for free. I am a very happy patron.

Of course, Rose is now in better shape than I am. I'd hoped to ride tonight, but I hurt too much especially my left arm. I may take a walk around the neighborhood or jog laps in the pool. Yeah, jogging in the pool sounds like fun.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Great ride, until...

Had a super stressful afternoon at work which culminated in a harrowing drive through the picket line at the back of the campus. I figured making the right turn onto Waxpool would be easier than the left onto the parkway but I didn't count on picketers jumping into the road ahead of my truck trying to get hit. Jackholes.

To burn off the extra adrenaline and stress, I hopped on my bike and toodled up and down residential streets aiming for the most mileage in the smallest area. I wound up on streets I've never explored and saw lots of pretty little homes and neat lawns. Lots of joggers and gardeners were out and about, taking advantage of the gorgeous evening weather. Everything was going great until I was nearly home.

I was in the neighborhood across the boulevard and coasting (much too) fast down the street. As I approached an intersection and prepared to turn right, a car pulled out from in front of another car against the curb ahead of me on the right. I startled and hit the brakes too hard. The bike mostly stopped but I didn't. I flipped over the handlebars and watched the road fly towards me and thought, "Oh wow. This is going to hurt." I skidded across the pavement on my knee, thigh, and elbows and then rolled onto my side to catch my breath. The car driver jumped out of his car and raced over to see if I was okay. I gasped that the wind was knocked out of me, but I thought I was otherwise okay. He apologized and I did my best to assure him that he hadn't done anything wrong and I startled and over-reacted. I checked my arms and legs to make sure nothing was broken or sprained and got up to pick up Rose. The driver retrieved my cell phone (which was protected by the handle-bar mount case) from the other side of the street. Phone was fine, case was fine. Bike was mostly okay but the rear brake and right shifter aren't happy. The frame and tires seemed okay. The front reflector broke off, but my front LED was fine. I was able to climb back on and carefully ride the two blocks home.

My elbows, left knee, and right thigh are scraped up pretty badly and there's a huge bruise and knot the size of a golf ball above my right knee. My shoulders and chest hurt from the impact, but aside from all that, I'm good. Rose is in the back of the truck and will be going to Spokes, Etc this evening for repairs.