I blame TechKnowGN. He's the one who said I have lots of reasons to not ride, and I do it anyway. But Mr. Beanz is at fault too, for calling me hardcore.
Well, I did 11 miles Saturday with minimal fatigue, so I thought 24 to my gym and back would be OK. I knew the route and the climbing wasn't any worse than I'd done many times before. Then the phone rang. My hiking buddy Dan wanted me to meet him for a late lunch in nearby Royersford. I said yes, realizing that I'd added six miles to my trip and doubled the climbing.
I headed off a few minutes before 2:00 PM. I had little difficulty with the ten per cent grade a mile into the trip, and not much more with the next couple of hills. The strong wind gusts were annoying, but I tridged on. Soon enough I was with Dan at the French Quarter Bistro, where I had lunch and a soda.
I headed off through Spring City and onto Wall Street, no doubt named because of the big hill on it. Then through Phoenixville and Monte Clare, onto the Schuylkill River Trail for a couple of miles, and then to my gym. I felt reasonably strong, not as fresh as on Saturday's ride, but OK. My butt was bothering me, however. I'd never broken in to the new saddle before winter, and I was finding it uncomfortable. So it was a relief to reach my gym at quarter to five.
After lifting, I left my gym at quarter to six. Headlights blazing, I headed back the way I came. I was a little tired and a little hungry, but I reasoned I'd be home soon enough. So I kept the gearing low and pedaled in the dark. I was in a good mood, humming bits from The Marriage of Figaro as I strained to see the path. My butt was getting very sore, however, as I rode on the increasing cold and deepening evening.
Once I got out of downtown Phoenixville, I felt a wave of fatigue wash across me. I dismounted and walked a couple of blocks. I realized I hadn't eaten since lunch several hours before, and I was showing signs of bonking. I pulled into the first eatery I found and consumed a turkey sub and a Powerade. In retrospect, I should have had two or three drinks.
By now it was 7:30, and I had six miles of rollers to go. I started out strong, but within a few minutes I needed to dismount and walk. And I walked and rode the final six miles in a bit more than an hour, getting home at 8:45.
A couple of hours later, I had the most intense series of leg cramps I'd ever experienced. As usual when I've not properly hydrated, they were in my inner thighs. I drank three glasses of water, writhed in pain on the floor a few minutes, and it passed.
Then a half hour later the second wave hit. This time it was in the back and outer side of the legs. Again I drank more water, I suffered, and it passed.
And after another half hour, I had a set of cramps in my thighs. Again water and time made them go away.
So my little ride Sunday showed me that I still don't hydrate and fuel properly, and that 30 miles plus lifting is too much too soon for someone who has been sedentary all winter. Curse you, TKGN!