whoops, double post.
whoops, double post.
Repeatedly rode my bike up a hill this morning. It hurt. I rarely wear headphones while riding, but since I was going up and down the same road with no traffic I made an exception and threw in one earbud. I think it eased the suffering and actually helped me find a good rhythm since it's a nice 4 minute hill.
Also met another Harpoon rider, who assured me the ride is not as scary as everyone makes it out to be. This was encouraging.
Took my first "solo" (single bike pulling the trailer) ride of the season yesterday. Too much riding on the back of the tandem proved to me that I have been missing out on the mental workout of steering, shifting, avoiding chippies and holes. Add on to that the fact that my kid has gotten HEAVY over the past year. Ah well, the good news is that I can only improve at this point.
To all of you riding today, stay relatively cool and hydrated!
FYI, for those of you who pass through Carlisle, I noticed that Fern's stocks patch kits, tubes, and Gu in case you get into a tight spot and find yourself without.
Easily one of the best days I've ever had on a bike.
Ended up with 94 miles in a very roundabout way.
22ish with a co-worker training for the PMC.
Another 30+ solo.
Finished with hard 40 miler through Medfield/Dover/Sherborn/Natick with another riding friend.
I'm pooped. Easy day tomorrow with another bfer should be fun.
no. crappy ride today. was to meet a buddy in Sudbury for a 30-mile loop. had planned to get up early and ride there from Westwood (20m each way) for a bit mroe than a metric century.
but then I forgot to set my alarm and woke up at 7:30 instead of 6, so I had to drive to Sudbury.
and when I got there, the rain was pouring. of course it wasn't raining when I left home, so I had my summer shoes on and hadn't brought my Showerspass jacket.
and his route was only 25 not 30. what a crummy morning
With wife and child out of town since Thursday I was hoping to pile on guilt-free miles. The weather has less than helpful however. Luckily, I have been up earlier than what is considered rational and mostly beating the worst of it. I got in 50 Thursday in the morning and didn't feel too bad when the Thursday night group ride was cancelled due to a nasty T-storm. I knocked out another 70 miles yesterday (40 before work, 10 on the way home and 25 at the CRW's "Friday night unwinder") and was up early today for a fast and wet 50 with the cycleloft crew. Funny, I found myself Friday night towing the A-group up strawberry hill and Saturday riding sweep down down it (descending in the rain is not my strong suit). It was a constant battle between keeping on the eye-wear (and, consequently, the road grit out) and seeing obstacles in the road--neither choice was a good one.
The rest of today was supposed to be devoted to marking the course for a 50 mile nscyc ride I am hosting out of Ballardvale (Andover). One factor I never considered is that spray paint does not work well on the road in the rain. Oh well, looks like it'll rain all day tomorrow so I can cancel the ride without too much guilt (though I'll probably drag myself out into the wet because no one will be home to discourage me).
I didn't ride today. Got the lawn mowed in the morning sprinkle. Went to the gym. Got a transmission put back together. Did nothing bike-related. :( And if you ride tomorrow you'll make me feel guilty.
Went out with friends last who were on a mission to get me drunk. Dragged myself off the couch at 3am, confident that thunderstorms in the am would save me from myself. Woke at 7:30 and wouldn't you know, the weather was clear (unlike my head). I moved as fast as my hangover would allow dress out, grab my "cycling bag", print out some cue sheets, throw the bike on the roof and head out to Andover. One lone cyclist showed up at 9am (just as I was silently cheering a no-show ride). He was a slower rider and said he didn't want to hold me back (my hangover was doing that just fine thank you) but I was encouraged that a nice, slow recovery ride was just what I needed. Plus I was supposed to "lead" this ride and not sandbag it. Hard to do when there are witnesses.
We went at a nice recovery pace in a near-constant drizzle/mist. Not enough to make it blinding or make the roads sketchy, but just enough to thoroughly soak one to the bone. I ended up peeling off my rain jacket early on since it was only helping me to over-heat.
There were a ton of short, steep climbs and beautiful, beautiful scenery (and nary a car on the road). I might have to host this ride again when the weather is a little more cooperative. Hopefully more people will show if it does.
210 guilt-free miles ridden since the family left on Thursday, less than a third of that was dry. Hope that eases your guilt a bit Jim.
I followed the Boston Marathon route from Kenmore Square into Framingham and then got on Winter St., north to Salem End, which became Oregon Rd in Ashland. This road was about 5 miles long and I would put it in the category of “enchanted.” It's a quiet, narrow lightly traveled and leafy street with beautiful homes, though the road surface is not “Doveresque.” On this quiet exurban country lane was a surprising restaurant called “The Oregon Club” with a neon sign proclaiming it as a legendary speakeasy. My impression is that it's a high-quality steakhouse, but it's such an unusual location. I imagined the swells of the Prohibition era driving way out into the country for a good time. See:
Another unusual find on that road was the idyllic appearing United Church of Christ Conference Center.
Oregon Road ended at Rte 9, and I then made my way to Rte 85 to Hopkinton, then Hopkinton Road to Upton. Hopkinton Road is hilly, surprisingly busy with nasty pavement and a narrow shoulder, but I wanted to visit an acquaintance on Hopkinton Road. Then I took Rte 140 through Milford to Rte 109 to Medway. Those two roads were far from enchanting, but I did find Village Street through Medway as a nice alternative to Rte 109 to Medfield.
There was intermittent light rain for the first thirty to forty miles, and then drenching rain starting on Rte 109, for almost 20 miles. I arrived in Norwood at 63.99 miles on my odometer and decided to keep it that way. I once saw an episode of Columbo where his antagonist was a hard drinking Irish poet and when he went head-to-head with Columbo, would make a scratch mark on his whiskey bottle with his diamond ring and say, “This far, and no farther.” Because of my time limitations, that’s my attitude towards a long, mileage-driven ride.
I'm back in Metro Boston but thought it was worth it to give my eastern Mass pals some sense of the storms in Western MA last week.
I left on Wednesday on one of my regular cross state "commutes" to the Berkshires (I do these with some regularity over the summer). I left Newton late (11 am) and I've done this ride enough that I feel confident to take off without a map but once again I got screwed up by the "Worcester problem"- this is basically getting around Worcester on roads that are direct but not heavily trafficked. I stupidly swung left once when I should have swung right. I knew it almost immediately but ignored my intuitions and kept going down a 4 mile slow descent suddenly swinging southeast when I should have been going slightly northwest. Realized my error and swung back around and climbed back to the turning point and was back on the route. But now I'm feeling like I have to hammer in order to make it to my destination by nightfall.
If you recall, last Wednesday's temps were in the 90's + and pounding along knowing my 128 mile ride had now turned into a 136 mile ride and that I needed to nail another century in about 6 hours after two hours of riding was making me feel a little pressured instead of the pleasure filled LSD* I had hoped to drop.
On I rolled and the ride was proceeding beautifully despite the heat. I was making decent time and the small towns are just the right distance for water refills and refuels. I was moving at a fine pace as I buzzed through Northampton at around 6:30 pm and I started the climb up Route 66 knowing I'd probably be riding the final 10 miles after sunset but pushed onward. As I made the climb the air was feeling a bit heavy and it had that funky stillness the precedes a storm but due to the incline I couldn't really see very far to the west until I crested at the Overlook Farm Stand and had a good view of the rest of the ride. I reached the crest and looked out over the western horizon and whoa! I had not been paying attention! The sky had turned dark purple to the northwest and the lightning was moving horizontally across the sky. I was roughly 25 miles from my destination and while there was a great 4 or 5 mile descent ahead of me there was almost 20 miles of steady climbing after that- my house sits at close to 2000' elevation and I would drop to about 350' before I got there.
I pulled out the smart phone to check the weather radar and the front was moving towards me at 40 mph and the graphic display showed green, yellow, red and purple!- along with Severe Weather Warnings stating golf ball sized hail, lightning, high winds and possibly a tornado.
I whipped the bike around and made the descent back into NoHo never letting the cyclometer read less than 30 mph- I swear I've set world records outrunning bad weather (and dogs) on my bike- I had no idea I had that much energy left. I would look over my shoulder during the descent at ominous clouds for incentive every once in a while- the cracks of thunder were like the cracks of a whip for a horse.
I sped into laconic Northampton where diners had settled in the warm evening air at the multitude of outdoor cafes and restaurants on Main Street. I was so amped up from the speedy downhill run that I wanted to scream, "The Sky is Falling!!!!" to shake them out of their placid ignorance of what was about to come but I restrained myself. I took out my tiny cable lock and locked my bike to a pole and was about to step into a pizza place to settle down and watch the storm when suddenly the wind whipped up, turned the leaves inside out on all the trees and a flash of lightning and simultaneous thunder woke the town from it's summer stupor.
Fortunately, my wife, who I thought had left Newton hours before, was only just leaving and could swing up to Northampton off the pike and pick me up. She arrived as the storm abated a bit and as we drove the back roads I would have ridden I was very thankful I'd turned around and taken the ride in the car. Trees and branches were downed and there were sandy wash outs along the road.
I managed to get in 117 miles in total and didn't regret not riding the final stretch when a day later I did a loop around my house and saw the astounding damage from this latest batch of storms.
* Long Slow Distance
Buzzman, that sounds like quite a ride! Good story tellin' too. Your day ended up a lot better than it might have.
FWIW, we had some pretty good storms here in the eastern part of the state too. Very impressive weather that day.
I did my usual commute today, 13 miles Attleboro over to Albion, back again in the afternoon. Dang, it was cold when I started, and the roads' shoulders were somewhat puddled over from the weekend's weather. But the ride up from the Blackstone River sure warmed me up. It was pleasantly cool on the ride home too.
One interesting feature of this commute is seeing all the other bikes people bring on the train. This morning had a blue and black Cervelo, all sleek and plasticky, very short wheelbase with the rear wheel tucked up into the seat tube, and with a set of handlebars I'd never seen. They were the sort that extend forward on the ends with no drop. The curious part was that it had two forward extensions in the center, just either side of the stem. The shifters were way out ion the ends, probably a foot in front of the flat parts of the bar. I didn't look comfortable. The guy who picked it up at the end of the run wasn't dressed as a rider, I think even wearing jeans.
Then this afternoon there was a guy in the Attleboro station parking lot on a fixie doing track stands and riding backwards slowly. Better balance than I could ever do.
Then on the train there were two more bikes. One was a nice modern Bianchi. The other said RT (I think, but I ferget) on the headbadge. It had a modernish front rim on a high-flange hub, nutted instead of QR, radially spoked, and with an over-long Presta valve stem sticking way out of the rim. It also had a straight fork with integrated sloping crown, Tektro dual-pivot front brake that didn't look like it fit too well, chainguard, fenders, a toeclip on one MTB pedal and the other pedal broken, an aged sprung leather saddle (Sorry, I don't recognize Brooks models), and funky urbanish handlebar wrapped with leather. Very strange bike to my eyes, but what do I know?
Wow. You guys are getting in some nice rides! I am getting out on the road more often now. Seems like when the deadlines and stress increase, I become much more purposeful and diligent in carving out my time to workout, whether it be on bike or foot. These days I'm hauling the trailer alone and suffer dearly up any hill. Either the kid got heavier or I got weaker... unfortunately it is a little of both. I milk those downhills for all they are worth, knowing that I'll be creeping up the next upside.
for those who want the gritty details of my ride plans this weekend, check out my blog post: just keep on pedaling
Today's commute was spectacular!
And seein' as how I'm going in tomorrow too (which I normally don't do) and won't have to make a meeting, I may carry a camera and take a few pics on the way...
And Craig, one of these days I'm gonna' try to make one of your North Shore rides. Your blog sounded like it would have been just my speed, trying to keep up with you when you are hung over. :lol:
A combination of being up too late watching the game, up too early this morning (5am) to get a ride in and giving blood yesterday seemed to sap my legs this morning. Felt like I was riding into a headwind my whole ride (there wasn't any) making 30 miles feel like 60. Planning on a redo ride this afternoon. At least the weather was spectacular.
On my early morning rides, I keep passing the same group (10 or so) of cyclists on Main St. in Lynnfield going the opposite direction. I wish I knew where they started or what their route is. Morning rides are far more tolerable if there others to share the pain with.
well got my a$$ handed to me today. was told that a local LBS was holding a "paceline training session" but is really a semiweekly training circuit. boy was I not ready for that. they split into two groups to accommodate me, the new slow guy, but I sure felt st00pid with my dork disk, triple, and handlebar bag. but hey, I was on the way to work!
Nice easy ride into Boston this morning with the promise of free breakfast boloco burritos, iggy's baked goods and coffee at the bike friday event held at government center at the end. Caffeinated and with a full belly and back pockets stuffed with swag, I headed off to work. Great way to start the day. Not looking forward to the ride home though. :(
Glad[you enjoyed it. Today was the first of these I have skipped. Maybe in July those of us who are going can arrange to meet and say hello...
QUOTE=cmolway;12801343]Nice easy ride into Boston this morning with the promise of free breakfast boloco burritos, iggy's baked goods and coffee at the bike friday event held at government center at the end. Caffeinated and with a full belly and back pockets stuffed with swag, I headed off to work. Great way to start the day. Not looking forward to the ride home though. :([/QUOTE]
I enjoy reading about your extended rides but for some reason, I'm somewhat surprised that you commute too. If I may ask, what's your start, finish and routes? Do you commute all year round?
I do an early 14-mile reverse commute from Kenmore Square to Norwood year-round. From about May to September I periodically do a 10 week century training schedule with daily mileage quotas that increases my weekly mileage from about 70 to almost 200. Today I did 28 miles (quota=27) through Dorchester, Milton, Canton, and Walpole to Norwood, arriving at 8:00 AM, much later than I usually do. However, I missed three 20+ mile days this week due to social and work-related events.
I admire the long and fast rides you and some of the other “top-tier” correspondents describe on this thread, and I humbly relate my rides, mostly to suggest the nice routes I find. I once kept up about 200 yards with godshammgod in a chance encounter. Nonetheless, given my busy life situation, I’m very happy with my cycling lifestyle. A thread I once read soon after subscribing to BF advised something like “My 15 mph is to me as your 24 mph is to you.” :thumb: