11/20/05 Rode with my friend Chris on one of my local rides in the area. I hadn’t been on the bike except for some spins on the trainer for almost 2 months. I thought I’d be out of form but I felt great. Left the house about 10:30 for the easy 20.5 mile loop, easy for me but not for Chris. I usually try to at least average 15 mph for my rides but I kept having to stop and wait for him. I was dropping him on the FLATS. This ride is real easy, mostly flat with 3 minor hills. Because of this my average speed was a paltry 13.2 mph. Looks like my fitness level is not too bad.
11/23/05 Since the weather has been nice the last 4 or 5 days I decided to ride before everybody came over to the house for turkey day. It was overcast and a cool 45 degrees at 11 am when I departed for a 33.75 mile ride out to Estacada and back. I learned a couple of things during this ride. Firstly, I need to get either a bandana or one of those caps footballers wear underneath their hemlets. My head was freezing. Secondly, my arms froze even with a long sleeve jacket on. The jacket has velcro on the wrists so you can cinch it down to prevent air and water from going up your arms but it doesn’t always work. Other than that it was a fun ride. I didn’t bring my ipod this time so it was just me, my head and the rode. Amazing what thoughts go through your head while your out on the rode on your bike. The best part of this particular ride is the wonderful scenery starting just 3 miles from my house. Beautiful rolling hills with farms and nurseries abound. Another aspect of country riding is all the different animals you see, dead and alive. I saw 2 dead coons, one flat rabbit, one flat crow and unfortunately a dead dog. Among the living I saw cows, horses, sheep, ducks and ironically being on turkey day, one wild turkey sitting in a ditch hiding from the axe I guess. I covered the distance averaging 15.2 mph for the 33 miles. I felt pretty strong the entire ride until the end when I had to go up a short but steep hill to get to my neighborhood. So I put the bike into the granny gear and chugged up the devilish hill. I made doing about 5 mph. I was gassed, but I felt good about myself for going out and doing it. Not to mention I got to brag to my friend Chris about my ride all through turkey day festivities. Weather permitting, I’m hoping to do that ride again on Saturday or Sunday.