Tuesday, September 06, 2011


Yesterday was my bike fitting at Spokes, Etc. I've had wrist and hand pain, including numbness in my fingers, as well as back pain when cycling for more than 15 miles. The guy gave me pointers for improving my bike posture and assured me that most of my issues are novice cyclist problems and will eventually work themselves out. Scott had suggested a ride before I left, and when I got home he added his bike to the carrier. I didn't want to deal with the Rte 28 overpass and did want to go further west than ridden to date. We jumped on the W&OD at Smiths Switch and rode to a park in the middle of Leesburg (8.61 miles) where we stopped to gulp Gatorade and rest our legs. My body is used to riding for five miles and then stopping for a break mostly because my commute to work is about five miles. My legs and lungs were fussing at me to stop around mile five, but I pushed on through. I was pretty tired by the time we took our break, though.

Once we caught our breaths, I was ready to keep on going west but the weather had other plans and the rainstorm started. We raced over to a gazebo and tried to wait out the storm but Scott saw a huge band of intense storms coming our way. I suggested we ride hard towards Smiths Switch.

Now, everyone who reads my journal knows that I'm incredibly accident prone. Part of the reason I didn't want to deal with Rte 28 was in case it was damp from an earlier shower. I figured me + bike + wet trail = spectacular crash. Happily, despite the pounding -- and at times blinding -- rain we made it through the storm unscathed by asphalt. I was grateful for the deep brim on my new helmet because it did a fairly good job of keeping the worst of the rain drops off my glasses. I was also grateful for the light jacket I stow in my seat bag; it did not keep me dry, but it did keep me warm. We exited the rain just before Belmont Ridge Road and rode a little easier (and a little more slowly) back to the truck. Scott suggested we go to his gym and let the hot tub work out our sore muscles, but I was simply too tired. Plus, I just wanted to be dry.

I'm a little concerned about the thirty mile ride. My longest ride to date is just over twenty miles. I may have to drop down to the 25 miler, but I want to aim for 30. Two weeks to go...

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