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I just wanted to pop in to chat quickly about the awesome bike ride I had earlier today. Yes- it’s taper time, and I really shouldn’t have gone as long as I did (but to be fair… it’s still the start of taper so I have some time…), but it was sunny and it’s what I really wanted to do today! Today is also the first real day of my “summer break” (where I work far fewer hours), so I had the entire day free after about 10:30 am.

I decided to do part of my ride on a new-to-me part of a trail, and had a great time. It was about 83 and sunny when I left, but the trail had lots of shady spots for most of the 21.5 miles that I went, which was nice. I brought appropriate fuel and gatorade & water this time (unlike a group ride I did last Tuesday), which definitely helped.

photoAround mile 10

The first few miles felt pretty easy. I clocked them in at 13.31, 14.98, and 14.05 mph respectively. The next few miles were uphill and straight against wind- TOUGH. I clocked those in between 11.75 and 12.4 mph respectively. I initially got annoyed knowing that my pace was dropping, but then I realized that uphill against wind is excellent training, and that a stupid number at the end doesn’t matter as much as how the workout went. I put my head down and pushed through, trying to enjoy the fields I was biking through. I turned around, knowing that I’d head downhill! I clocked those next three miles at 17.8, 16.7, and 15.3 mph, and enjoyed the breeze as the uphill portion had been in straight sunlight and heat. The rest of the ride was smooth sailing, and I ended my last three miles of the ride with paces between 14 and 15.2 mph- a solid finish to the ride. I ended up eating half a package of sports beans and 2 shot bloks on the ride, and that with the gatorade was sufficient (It’s so funny how different road vs. trainer biking is. On the trainer I didn’t need any fuel for a 20 mile ride, but on the road with hills and wind I definitely need some!).

What I love most about biking outside is seeing all of the wildlife and nature (flowers, trees, the fields, etc…). I ended up having to slow down because a muskrat was running down the trail ahead of me. Once I got close to him he ran off to the side of the trail and laid flat against the ground and didn’t move until after I passed. It was pretty cute- I wish I had a movie of the entire thing. I ended the ride smiling, happy to be out in the sunshine flying down the trail.

Now it’s your turn to share! Do you enjoy biking? If you do- what’s your favorite part about it?Β 

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