Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Say What?

Lunicycle’s recipe for success:

A couple of days of so-so nutrition and inadequate hydration topped off by an evening filled with stress and very little sleep. Then you go for a ride.

I tried this recipe for success myself just this morning, and it was absolutely successful if you want to ride like me. If you don’t want to ride like me (a thing which, by the way, I don’t recommend) then you might want to try someone else’s recipe for success.

I fooled the dogs and the wind this morning by dragging myself out of bed later than usual and thus hitting the road later than usual. I can imagine the wind having woken up and checked, finding me still in bed and rolling over for just that little bit of extra sleep that makes all the difference. Then, happy and comfortable, the wind wakes up and finds me out on the road. “Hey,” says the wind. “What do you think you’re doing out there without me?!” and the wind then comes to join me on the road.

Having learned (so I thought) something about this area of the county, I finally constructed a route for myself that wasn’t just out and back again, only to find that I don’t know this part of the county half so well as I thought. The route I had chosen was about ten miles shorter than I thought it was, so I had to tack on a randomly chosen loop to get the extra miles.

I spotted a guy being taken for a drag by his dogs. The man was standing on a skateboard holding the lashes of two good sized dogs who were jogging along nicely and pulling him behind them. This is the easy way to take your dogs for a walk, I suppose.

I also spotted a dead snake by the side of the road that was over three and a half feet long at the very least. This was a little startling. It was so startling that I kind of jumped (not a thing I recommend doing while riding a bicycle, by the way) a bit later when I saw what turned out to be a garden snake.

Okay, it was a garden hose but it might have been a snake.

I passed three other cyclists. I prefer to phrase it this way for my own self-esteem, but the fact is that we were headed in opposite directions. I don’t think I knew any of them, but I hope they were near the end of their ride, because one of them was covered in sweat.

Well, I don’t suppose I know for a fact that it was sweat, but he was certainly covered in something, and if it wasn’t sweat, I don’t want to speculate about what it was. It was good to see other riders on the road, even if they were headed away from me and I couldn’t draft off them.

I got back to the neighborhood a mile short of the distance I wanted with some very tired legs indeed, and I forced myself to ride around the neighborhood as hard as I could go. I actually passed my Lovely Lovely sitting on the porch and didn’t see her. I was too busy acting as my own coach, which basically means fussing at myself to keep the pedals spinning around at a reasonable rate of speed. I don’t know why I did this, but it seemed to help.

Today’s ride end up being harder than I anticipated (or possibly I was weaker than I anticipated – it pays to think of all the possibilities) but even a hard ride is a good ride. (Sometimes a hard ride is an especially good ride.) I ended up with a good distance and a good pace.

Now I’m going to get some rest.

See you on the road.


  1. Thanks. It took some fidgeting, but I was happy with how it turned out.