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  1. #1
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    Lesser Achiever rides half his age!

    Two weeks ago I posted that I had ridden 18 miles, breaking 12 miles for the first time since I was 23 years old.

    Today I can report that I did half my age, 26 miles. This is an all-time high for me, breaking my previous high of 22 miles - set when I was a teenager.

    It was all rail trail, approximately 23 on dirt/gravel surfaces. About 18-20 miles was into an 8-10 mph headwind - I did not appreciate that.

    Elasped time to complete, including all stops, almost exactly 3 hours. As my goal was to complete it within 4 hours, with hopes that I could do it in 3.5, I was very pleased to finish in 3.

    Riding attire was a green Target C9 jersey, some clearance socks from Nashbar, Borah padded undershorts, Target C9 long, lightweight khaki pants, reflective Fred strap on right ankle, and sneakers. Contemplated installing my PowerGrips straps but decided not too as I didn't want to risk them being uncomfortable.

    First 10 miles were a breeze, except for the wind. Then I started tiring on a long 3% incline with the wind taking its toll. Then I got up to the train tunnel (980' long, curved, near pitch black in the middle), walking the bike through about half of it. When I came out the other side, rested a bit and now heading down a 3% slope, I caught my second wind and never had problems again.

    To the best of my knowledge, my pulse rate never hit 100, and I completed the entire ride consuming only 16 ounces of water (out of my 24 ounce bottle). I never got thirsty. It was a nice, cool 56 when I started out, climbing to the low 70s by the time I finished. Did drink a lot of water later at lunch.

    I hereby promote myself to Recreational Rider, Class 2.

    My wife met me in the beautiful small town of New Glarus, Wisconsin, where we had lunch.

    I can also state that I hit my first weight reduction goal. Starting from mid-Sept last year, I am now down 15 pounds, hoping to be down 25 by Oct 1. Biking is a big part of my weight loss program.
    "Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen." Louis L'Amour

    There are two types of road bikers: bikers who are faster than me, and me. Bruce Cameron - Denver Post

  2. #2
    tsl
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    Congratulations Tom!

    You're right around where I was last year at this time. I broke 30 miles in June, did my first 50-miler in August, and just over 70 miles each on rides in October and November.

    You're on the right track. Keep it up!
    My two favorite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything.
    The perfect day: Riding a bike to the library.—Peter Golkin


    Lucky for me, I work at a library and bike to work.

  3. #3
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    The Magic Eight-Ball sees shaved legs and bib shorts in your future.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  4. #4
    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    Outstanding. Glad to hear your having fun.

  5. #5
    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil
    Two weeks ago I posted that I had ridden 18 miles, breaking 12 miles for the first time since I was 23 years old.

    Today I can report that I did half my age, 26 miles. This is an all-time high for me, breaking my previous high of 22 miles - set when I was a teenager.

    It was all rail trail, approximately 23 on dirt/gravel surfaces. About 18-20 miles was into an 8-10 mph headwind - I did not appreciate that..
    Congratulations!

    For me, riding into headwinds is worse than climbing hills. At lease you can see the end of the hill
    =============================================================
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  6. #6
    Senior Member edp773's Avatar
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    Congratulations. Those headwinds on hills can be challenging.

    I like the architecture in New Glarus. What a great place to end your ride.
    Born Again Bicyclist! I found my Faith.

    Giant Cypress, GF Wahoo, Trek 7.3FX, Schwinn Sprint

  7. #7
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    You'd better take that Eight-Ball in for its tuneup!

    tsl, you're a better man than I'll ever be. No plans to ever do a 70 and a 50 is unlikely. I might attempt something in the 35-40 range.

    All I really wanted to be able to do is to take a comfortable 10-15 mile ride. Where I could go out for an hour to an hour and a half and enjoy the ride & nature. I'm getting there now.

    This ride started out as my attempt to ride to my favorite little town. This is a goal I established last year. The shortest route to that town (via bike path) is 18 miles. But once I got down to the short cut over to the town, I was feeling good so I decided to take the scenic route, which added 4 miles.

    Then once I got to town, 30 minutes early, I decided to go for 26. That town has some nice paved paths and I'd been on gravel all morning. So I did two laps on a 1 mile ride out to a park, giving me my 26. I finished with a very modest "sprint" over the last two tenths.

    I only used 4 gears over the entire 26 miles - the middle four cogs on the rear with the middle crank on the front. How many do you need on a rail trail with a slope range of plus or minus 3 degrees?
    "Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen." Louis L'Amour

    There are two types of road bikers: bikers who are faster than me, and me. Bruce Cameron - Denver Post

  8. #8
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beverly
    Congratulations!

    For me, riding into headwinds is worse than climbing hills. At lease you can see the end of the hill
    I figure that at my speed into an 8-10 mph headwind, that I'm running into about the same amount of wind as most riders in this forum are hitting on a perfectly calm day!
    "Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen." Louis L'Amour

    There are two types of road bikers: bikers who are faster than me, and me. Bruce Cameron - Denver Post

  9. #9
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    Congratulations on establishing a new record... always a good feeling.

    This record will fall soon.

  10. #10
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jet Travis
    The Magic Eight-Ball sees shaved legs and bib shorts in your future.
    +1

    Way to go, Tom!
    Visit my blog! The Leadership Almanac
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  11. #11
    tsl
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil
    tsl, you're a better man than I'll ever be. No plans to ever do a 70 and a 50 is unlikely. I might attempt something in the 35-40 range.
    I didn't plan any of them. Not that they were accidental either, (Whoops! I just rode my bike 70 miles How'd that happen?), but I wasn't "training" for long rides, and didn't have goals set for them. Hell, I even rode them all in cargo shorts from Sam's Club!

    The 50-miler in August was a group ride that got rained out. A gal who showed up and I just rode our bikes around the countryside in the rain for an afternoon.

    The first 70 miler was when a guy a few years older than me invited me to join him for a metric century. My damned fool head thought "39 miles and change". No, 39 and change is the number of inches in a meter. Doh! I was still 10 miles from home when the cyclometer ticked off 62.14 miles...

    Compare that to my first ride, March 29, 2006 when I had to stop and rest halfway home from the LBS with my brand new bike. It's just 0.67 miles away.

    I'm just sayin' the only limits you have, are the ones you impose on yourself.
    My two favorite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything.
    The perfect day: Riding a bike to the library.—Peter Golkin


    Lucky for me, I work at a library and bike to work.

  12. #12
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsl
    I'm just sayin' the only limits you have, are the ones you impose on yourself.
    That does it, I'm getting on my bike and kicking Landis' juiced up @ss. Then I'll get to date Cheryl Crow.

  13. #13
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsl
    The first 70 miler was when a guy a few years older than me invited me to join him for a metric century. My damned fool head thought "39 miles and change". No, 39 and change is the number of inches in a meter. Doh! I was still 10 miles from home when the cyclometer ticked off 62.14 miles...

    Compare that to my first ride, March 29, 2006 when I had to stop and rest halfway home from the LBS with my brand new bike. It's just 0.67 miles away.

    I'm just sayin' the only limits you have, are the ones you impose on yourself.
    I would have noticed my ride was going beyond 39 miles a long way before I got to 62!

    I can identify with your first ride story. I was absolutely whipped and beaten before I got to the 1.5 mile mark last September. And after 2.5 mles (having already taken 2 rest stops), I then took a 30 minute rest stop. Completing the 4 mile ride took something like 1.5 hours.
    "Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen." Louis L'Amour

    There are two types of road bikers: bikers who are faster than me, and me. Bruce Cameron - Denver Post

  14. #14
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    Good going Tom.

    I definitely think JT's 8-ball is on to something. Don't fight it, it's out of your control.

  15. #15
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by edp773
    I like the architecture in New Glarus. What a great place to end your ride.
    I visit there frequently, as it is only 15 miles from where I live. As you probably know, it is the trailhead for the Sugar River Trail and has a wonderful old train depot converted to a trail HQ.

    What impressed me so much was how much activity there was at the depot. The parking lot was nearly filled. The trail going out to about 5 miles from there was packed with families, church groups, scouts, older couples, and more seriously equipped riders. At three miles out from the trailhead, as I came in, I passed a young mother and her small child - who was riding a bike with training wheels on it - heading out away from town.

    As I waited at the depot for my wife to show up, there were cyclists everywhere. Four guys out on road ride stopped to use the restroom and fill up on water - two looked to be around 60. One had a beautiful black Waterford. Then two older couples came by on ultra-comfort bikes. Then some families.

    Then, my timing was quite poor, 7 women were preparing to go out and one asked me for a little assistance. It was when I was over there helping them, that my wife pulled into the parking lot. They were planning on making the roundtrip to Brodhead and back, a total of 46 miles. Five of the seven were riding near identical Trek 7500 hybrids.

    I thought the atmosphere was great. Clearly a case where a bike trail brings a lot of people to a small town. The restaurant where we ate was packed with people in biking gear.
    "Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen." Louis L'Amour

    There are two types of road bikers: bikers who are faster than me, and me. Bruce Cameron - Denver Post

  16. #16
    Senior Member George's Avatar
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    Good going Tom, I guess it one of those things, first you want 20, then 25, and so on. As long as it's fun who cares.
    George

  17. #17
    Senior Member Terrierman's Avatar
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    So, hit on by 7 women with the old "a little assistance" ploy eh? Sounds like one fine ride to me, way to go Tom, reading your stuff always makes me feel good. Thanks for posting.
    It's all downhill from here. Except the parts that are uphill.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terrierman
    So, hit on by 7 women with the old "a little assistance" ploy eh? Sounds like one fine ride to me, way to go Tom, reading your stuff always makes me feel good. Thanks for posting.
    I think he was ready to ride off with them when his wife pulled up.

    He hasn't mentioned the part about sleeping on the couch tonight.

  19. #19
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Congratulations. Nothing "lesser" about your achievement.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  20. #20
    Senior Member MichiganMike's Avatar
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    Great job. I have got to get over there and ride some of those trails. I hear nothing but great things about them.

    Sounds like the perfect day to me.

  21. #21
    Senior Member freeranger's Avatar
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    Congrats. Sounds like we share the same tastes in riding apparel. I miss the many rail-trails we had when living in NE Md., and the many mtb.trails just north of us, around Shrewsbury and York, Pa. Keep going and you'll ride your age before you know it!

  22. #22
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil
    I thought the atmosphere was great. Clearly a case where a bike trail brings a lot of people to a small town. The restaurant where we ate was packed with people in biking gear.
    It's exciting to see more and more bikers hit the roads. Freeranger and I must have seen at least 40 other bikers on our ride yesterday. Not a one of them overtook us, a testiment either to our blinding speed, or to the fact that we were lost and continuously going the wrong way.

  23. #23
    "Purgatory Central" Wino Ryder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jet Travis
    The Magic Eight-Ball sees shaved legs and bib shorts in your future.


    .........riding a Pinnarello with aero-bars on a double century.


    Congrats Tom.

  24. #24
    Streetfire HopedaleHills's Avatar
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    Great Job! That 26 will turn into 40 pretty quick.
    Tim
    Singing Do Wah Ditty, Ditty Dum Ditty Do

  25. #25
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    Does Pinnarello offer a model with a gasoline motor?

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