12/23/15: Strava says 9918 miles ridden in 2015. Well at least now I can do the math in my head. My last 2 rides have beat me a pulp. The pace and conditions were both brutal leaving me tired, hungry and slow to recover. I stepped off the scale at 152 which is way too light. I’m really looking forward to a couple of rest days. There’s a pattern here. Looking forward to resting leads to looking forward to riding.
I told you it would be mayhem that ‘id prevent me from completing MY Fool’s Journey. Flow like water meet Mr. Broken Spoke and his nasty cousin Mr. Flat Tire. Ahh but nary a mile missed. The broken spoke was actually just the nipple. It didn’t get caught up in the drive train and take me out or cause the wheel to start doing a salsa dance. I didn’t even realize it till I got home. The local bike shop guys had the part and I fixed the thing myself figuring that a man should be able to fix his own wheel. AM I RIGHT!!! I began my Saturday ride with some doubt about my repair though. Did you ever experience this? This phantom bike issue? This powerful feeling of something’s not right only to discover it’s all in your head? The phantom flat that you get after repairing one? Anyway……….
Mom always told me that bad things happen in 3’s. And so the day after the broken spoke I get a flat and then I go and knock the transmission out of the small blender we use for smoothies. We blow one of these apart about once a year because we grind ice into the smoothie to make it like a shake. Need to find one that is more robust, rigorous, maybe one made in Germany and NOT MADE IN CHINA! The big blender is awesome but more work to clean. So that’s my three. Should be good to go for awhile.
AND WHAT ABOUT THE HOLIDAY SEASON! WOW! It’s great to get together with everyone eating and wassailing to near excess but it’s hard on the body. The diet suffers for sure but what about all the human contact, hugging, hand shaking and that peck on the cheek! The results for me is this annoying head cold.
Here’s a piece of friendly advise. Hit the start button on your cyclometer. Seriously I’m about 5 miles down the road and I look at what appears to be fuzzy distance data. I scratch me head for a second and realize I failed to start the thing. I am the weakest link! And so I lost 5 miles. No I didn’t manually fix it! I took a 5 mile penalty for unnecessary stupidity. It’s not enough with the mayhem. NOOOOO!!……….. Now there’s nitwittery.
Active Insider posted a piece on how to convert cycling miles into running miles. Looking at Strava and dividing the miles ridden by the time and rounding up my average speed for this journey is 18 mph. Not bad….Okay……… there’s no divider here for 18 mph and so I’m guesstimating it to be 3.2. Following the instructions, dividing the distance, 10,000, by the ahh….divider, my miles ridden is equal to 3125 miles ran. What it’s telling me is that cycling is 1/3rd the work of running. I would have guessed less than that. Can’t imagine running 3125 miles in a year! There’s little comparison between the 2 sports. Covering the same distances, the bicycle has all the mechanical advantages over just the legs and cardio plus no impact. Most of my cycling miles are spent in the peleton and paceline, wheel sucking, which equates to even less work than running. Most of my running days were solo or side by side, no drafting. The only mechanical advantage being the correct shoes and maybe compression socks and while I can’t find any hard science about increasing the blood flow in the legs during endurance athletics by wearing compression socks I figures I’d give it a go. Some say yes while some are not convinced and so what’s a man to do but try it. It makes sense that the legs would recover quicker with increased blood flow. In the case of the legs it would be trying to increase the flow back to the heart through the smaller veins. Sounds good. More flow = more oxygen = faster recovery. Then there are those who claim the placebo effect is in play. If you believe it it’s going to work. Great! I gotta hand out some style points for the socks the folks I ride with wear for sure. Feels good looks good is good. Bike nerds believe what is convenient. Things like lighter is better and will make me faster. Aero is better and will make me faster. Because I ride a lot I can eat all the crap I want. I must have carbon fiber everything. I must display as much data as possible on my cyclometer. If it’s not on Strava it didn’t happen. The biggest difference between a 60+ year old rider and a 40 year old rider is recovery time and/or the ability to work harder longer. This last one is convenient for me to believe but I really have no idea what I’m talking about.
I managed to complete my 10,000 miles ridden in 2015 in spite of myself. I rode with an All Star Lineup Sunday December 27th 2015 to finish up. No fanfare, no parade, just a normal day in the saddle with a small group of good friends, after the SMAK DOWN Saturday ride and while I’m still not convinced riding for distance is important one of the real nice after effects is the nap that it induces. I really love my nap after a hard ride, but again a hard ride is defined many ways. I go out and ride 20 miles at 20 mph and that’s a hard ride. Riding 50/60 miles with the fit lads and lasses is a hard ride. Getting the heart rate up is my fix.
So What Lies Ahead for This Site?
This BLOG has been around for awhile already and I’m a little concerned that the routes listed under the Rays Rides tab are out dated and so I took them down. Things have changed around here, for the better, making Charlotte Co. Florida even more of a cycling paradise. I really don’t want to be the guy that points you down the wrong road. I want to spend some time reviewing the routes and maybe redrawing a bunch of them showing the roads I ride most from my house knowing that you’re smart enough to figure out your own starting point. I have asked Strava not to let on exactly where I live, something you may want to consider doing yourself just so the bad guys can’t steal your bikes. Log onto Strava and press the little arrow by your profile picture and go to settings then privacy. Look for Hide your house/office on your activity maps.
BUT WAIT A DOGGONE MINUTE!
The Strava Widget over there shows the way! So why bother. Let Strava do the work. “But Ray, there’s no cue sheet!” WHO CARES!!! Upload the route into your Garmin or whatever right from Strava ( after clicking on my Strava widgit click on the picture of the wrench there on the left and just follow along.) Even my simple Edge 500 will show the course. It’s memory is short just like mine but……….still no cue sheet. Can’t remember the last time I used one of those anyway. Might be time to evolve. I’ll need to sleep on this.