Well... with the Performance Bike 30% back in points sale going on, and Father's Day this weekend, I was the recipient last night of a brand new Fuji Absolute 3.0 Hybrid/flat bar road bike.
After we got home from the movies last night (Star Trek: Into Darkness - my one word review: meh) it was nearly 11 o'clock, but I wanted to ride the new bike for my long ride, so I spent a couple of hours prepping the bike... moving my Ergon GP3 grips over, mounting the ANT+ cadence/speed sensor as well as the Garmin watch mount and my Wahoo ANT+ iPhone case (I am a total geek with sport technology and I actually run both the Garmin and the Wahoo App to track each ride).
Everything worked out well and I had the bike all ready... by 1:30AM. I had my alarm set for 4:30 so I could be on the trail by 6am.
I picked the mostly flat Schuylkill River Trail for today's ride. The trail runs right beside the Schuylkill River and right in front of our corporate offices. I planned to park at the office and head in to Philadelphia along the trail... passing behind the art museum and back to Conshohocken.
That went very well, though my average speed was a bit slow because I made several stops to tweak some things and dial in the seat height a bit more. When I got back to the car, I had covered 22 miles, and I felt ready for more, so I continued on the trail all the way out to Valley Forge National Park and a trailhead just about a mile past the park exit on the trail. I stopped and rested there for a few minutes and then headed for "home". By the time I got back to the car, I was just past 46 miles for the morning, and I couldn't let that go... so I rode 2 more miles back toward Philly, turned around and turned over 50 just as I exited the trail for the parking lot.
My first 50 mile ride. It took me 3:27 minutes to cover that distance (14.46 MPH average). The average was brought down a bit by congestion on the trail as the morning wore on... it was absolutely beautiful here this morning, and EVERYONE was out for a ride or run or walk.
From an elevation standpoint, this is very similar to what I'll be riding on July 14th... perhaps a bit more elevation change... though no real hills to speak of. The new bike is definitely faster than the old trek - I had a couple of miles that averaged over 18 mph for the whole mile and had a top speed on flat ground of nearly 22mph.
All of this was without the large sprocket in front... I need to adjust the high limit stop a bit as the chain was lightly rubbing the derailer when it was in the big gear up front - regardless of which rear gear I had selected. I probably could have ridden with it for a while, but I figured I wasn't spinning out the gears anyway, so why ask for trouble.
I absolutely LOVE the bike and it was a great deal at Performance this weekend. (after netting out the performance club points, the bike was $280) It isn't a high-end bike, but I am definitely glad I didn't jump on the Walmart bike I was considering a couple of weeks ago. This is easily 3 or 4 times the bike for twice the money.
So, I'm not scared at all of the 65 mile ride on July 14th... now I'm actually considering the 100 mile option. I know it would be a very big challenge to double what I did today, but I think I could do it. I am loving the fact that I just had a 3 1/2 hour workout on the bike (burning 3500 calories based on HR-based calorie burn calculations - reality is probably more like 3000) and I feel pretty fresh... a run that long would wipe me out for the rest of the day... perhaps for the whole weekend.
Well... anyway, I took some pictures on the ride and of the bike when I got home...
The Schuylkill River along Kelley Drive near City Line
The back side of the Philadelphia Museum of Art from Martin Luther King Drive
Hillside path leading to the Pawlings Road Trailhead near Valley Forge
The new bike 34 miles into its service
The obligatory white garage door photo
My "dashboard" with watch and iPhone (I keep a 7200mah external battery in the triangle frame bag and run the USB cable to the iPhone...
I could easily go on an all-day ride and have enough battery power to keep the screen on and music playing)
Closeup of the Ergon GP3-L grips/bar ends. I'm still tweaking the angle of both the grip and the bar ends, but it was pretty comfortable for the long ride today... I'm not far off of where I want them.
Tomorrow is a local West Chester ride for Cancer... just 10 miles, but with the wife and kids as well.
The 50 miles today was the only workout of the week for me... hopefully work and weather won't get in the way of workouts the rest of the week this time.
That's it for now!