Monday, June 06, 2011
This morning's ride was rough. I ran 6 miles on Saturday and my legs felt the need to remind me of that fact this Monday morning. I have noticed that as I get older, I am more sore on the second day that the first. Which does not matter much for me anymore. Soreness in my legs used to really impede my bike riding. But after nearly two years of biking to and from work, it really does nothing more than slow me down a little.
But I was still very sore so I limped to work at a nice casual 14mph pace. I planned for a wet ride home though because the forecast called for some hefty thunderstorms. Here are a few interesting facts about biking to and from work. Everyone around you feels the need to inform you of the weather. They also feel the need to inform you every time it rains outside. My co-workers all consider my commitment to biking a little nuts and with all honesty, so do I sometimes. HAHAHA!!!!!
A very strong storm rolled into our area around 3:00. One of those strong thunderstorms Florida afternoons are known for. High winds, lots of rain and enough lightning to make north east Florida the lightning capital of the country. When this happens it is a guarantee that I will receive an e-mail or visit from a co-worker asking what I plan to do. My answer is the same as always...I intend to ride home just like I normally do. The following look from the co-worker always cracks me up. If you want to see the expression, tell your spouse or closest family member that you are going to do the next grocery shop in the nude. That look you receive is the EXACT look I get every single time I tell someone that rain, wid, and even lightning really does not intimidate me. Especially if I am prepared.
So...here is the initial point of the blog. A gym member today watched me as I prepared for my bike ride. I have four plastic heavy duty plastic bags for holding my gear when it rains. These bags are small, water proof and very durable. They are the same size as a small showering kit you would buy at Walmart. I have acquired them over months and they work great. I carry everything from my wallet and cash to my iPad and cell phone. All of these bags fit snugly into my saddle bag pockets. I then wear something that protects my eyes from the rain. Biking at 20mph in pouring rain means near blindness unless you have your eyes protected. My personal set up is a pair of glasses with clear lenses and a golf cap. Works fine.
So I was ready to ride, the weather cleared up a good deal, but it was still drizzling. However I made a commitment to myself this month that I would not make excuses and push hard all month long. So off I went and my legs were not very happy about it. After the first mile though the soreness was gone. By mile 10 I was pushing myself. By mile 18 I was close to my personal best time. I missed my personal best by 3 minutes. BUT it was a rainy, nasty day with lots of standing water on the ground (thank you fenders) and a fairly strong headwind for about 1/2 my ride. Turned out to be a fantastic ride and I was drenched in rain and sweat when I got home. There are few better feelings I know than finishing a ride, being filthy, sweaty, soaked to the core and know that I was seriously doubting my sanity at the beginning of my ride.