More biking, or biking more?

      5 Comments on More biking, or biking more?

For a while now, I’ve been interested in raising my biking mileage. With some of the three-day weekends I’ve had lately, I thought sure I would break a 50-mile weekend, but it never seemed to happen, for one reason or another.

But last weekend I talked myself into joining an Easy Riders ride through the SW hills and trails and did my first 30-mile ride. That went so well that I had a salad and drinks afterwards, and decided to ride all the way home as well, another 20 miles. w00t, my first 50-mile day! I arrived home very dry, and with a terribly sore ass, but otherwise quite chuffed.

This weekend, there was a Portland Wheelmen ride down in Canby, and I was determined to build on my experience with their “short” little 30-mile ride. I did a bit of riding during the week, to stay loose. I also made it a point to eat really well during the week. My staple meal all week was Thai Spring Rolls, without the wrappers. Basically, that’s a veggie confetti (cabbage, carrots, radishes, mint, cilantro, cucumber, bell pepper, water chestnuts, celery) with a modest amount of shredded roasted chicken and some spicy peanut sauce. Yum! Layer all that over a wee bit of brown rice, and I could eat that seven days a week! I also slept better during the week than is normal for me. I had a good meal the night before, didn’t drink, and went to bed early.

And woke up Saturday morning feeling like crap on a stick. Groggy, listless, half asleep, with a bitch of a headache and little flashes of light in my vision. (I’ve had those light flashes a few times in my life, once as a precursor for a major migraine.)

But I was determined to tough it out. We drove down to Canby, only to find it cooler, grayer and windier than predicted. We signed up, ate a wee bit of oatmeal and started the ride. Right away, I let my ego run away with me, and I hammered hard (for me) through the miles. I kept thinking that if I just pushed through, I’d come out the other side feeling fine. It happens sometimes! It didn’t happen this time. My legs had no juice, I couldn’t get a second wind, I felt like I was pedaling into a stiff headwind on the entire loop. And I let myself fall into the headgame of keeping a running count of riders I was passing, versus riders who were passing me. (Yet another time when very mild OCD is not helpful.) I was doing fairly well until the last five miles (26-26) when two separate packs of 15, lithe, spandex-clad gazelles slipped past me like I was standing still. That dashed all hopes of breaking even. I salvaged a wee bit of pride by passing a pack of seven riders a little later, but by that time I was mainly interested in simply being done. Ride finished, we ate a wee bit of post-ride food and came back home to crash for a most righteous nap.

And I woke up feeling better than I had in 24 hours. Go figure. Apparently I know not a damn thing about prepping for a ride. Sigh.

After lots of thought and discussion, on the next ride I will focus on simply having fun and enjoying the day, and speed and competition be damned. At this point, I’m more interested in building miles than building speed. (Though I expect the one will contribute to the other.)

One final note – Last night, after dinner, I stopped by REI to look at padded bike shorts (ow, my ass!). In the changing room, I flexed my legs a bit. Damn! I’ve always had pretty cut calves, but my quads… wow! When did that happen?!

I spent last night looking over the Pedalpalooza calendar, deciding what events I was most interested in joining. Heh, I have something in mind for almost every single day, and multiple events for several of the days. It’s gonna be a bust bicycling month in Portland!

5 thoughts on “More biking, or biking more?

  1. gorthx

    I stopped by REI to look at padded bike shorts (ow, my ass!).

    Holy crap, you rode 50 miles without a chamois? I think you can officially be called a hard-ass for that. 😉

    (BTW, hi.)

    1. browse Post author

      Yeah, Bobo keeps giving me good advice. “Really, you want to be wearing gloves.” and “You know, a good pair of biking shorts would help with that bone-deep pain on your ischium.” It just takes me too damn long before I start listening. 🙂

  2. istar

    Yay bikes! I wish I could do more in this year’s pedalpalooza, but sadly, most of the evening activities start before I’m home from work. I would highly recommend the Pizza Ride, though, or any of the rides led by Shawn Granton.

  3. lisaceebee

    You rockstar!

    Pretty damn awesome, dude. Whether you felt like crap or not, you effing DID it. I think that’s great.

    Would you believe I don’t even own a bike? Lance will quibble with this as we still have the Raleigh SuperRecord road bike I got when I was 16 years old (and you and I lived in the same neighborhood) hanging in our garage, but frankly it’s a piece of… well, you know. Periodically I think I would love to have a bike, but then I’d have to get a bike rack and find places to drive in order to ride it, and what a pain that seems. Boxing is so much easier. (Basically I’m lazy?)

    Those Thai Spring Rolls have me drooling. That’s one of my all-time favorite things. I think we both became foodies, except you actually make good food; I just appreciate and desire it.


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