February Base Miles

That's right. Outdoor riding in February. This winter started out as bad as last winter, but the snow let up and the roads cleared off. Then it warmed up....a lot.

Friday, me and a bunch of guys at work got out for the first lunch ride of the year. Early season rides are always interesting because we have such varying levels of fitness. We dropped our first guy 3 miles in. Too much beer in the off-season and you pay the price.

The high for Saturday was 50 so I wanted to get out for a long ride. I was thinking 50 miles, but then Dennis called and wanted to ride about 20 miles with me. He suggested meeting me somewhere, but I came up with the idea of riding to his house, doing a 20 mile loop with him and then riding home. It turns out I took the long way to his house and the ride was a bit longer than I expected - 75 miles.

I had a strong tailwind going to his house and averaged 19.6 mph without trying. That's when I knew I was going to be in trouble on the way home. Dennis had a loop planned that started out with 10 more miles with a tailwind. Fun, but now I'm looking at 35 miles straight with a headwind.

You can see I mixed up the route a bit on the way home for some variety. I had about 65 miles in my legs, which would've been great if the ride was only 65 miles. The last 10 were a struggle and I coasted a lot. But I can't complain. I was in good enough shape in early Feb to do 75 miles which isn't something I've ever been able to say before.

I snapped a few pics on the way home...

Lake Kegonsa

Look mom, no hands.

Sunday morning I went for a long run - 11 miles. My legs were tired from the ride at the start of the run, and they hurt by the time I got home. So I rested for a few hours and headed out for another 25 miles (Paoli Loop) so I would have 100 miles in for the weekend. I expected that ride to be brutal, but my legs loosened up and weren't too bad. This morning was a different story. Luckily Mondays are rest days.

Tomorrow is going to be in the mid 50s so we're heading out for another lunch ride. We're going to have a 20-30 mph headwind so the way out to Paoli is going to be tough. The way back, however, is going to be really, really fast. I loves me a good tailwind so I'm dropping the hammer on the way back. A lot of the guys don't have many base miles in yet so that will break up the group quite a bit, but I don't care. They know the way back. I can't resist an opportunity to do 30+ mph on Seminole [plus, when I started riding no one cut me any slack....I got dropped]



Today I sent in my application to join the Madcity Velo club. I've been debating joining them for more than a year, and today I went for it. It's cheap, only $25 for the year so I figured it was worth it. They're a local cycling club. They have weekly training rides and race local events throughout the summer. I joined because I want some more people to ride with and I want to do some more racing...and I need some teammates. I've only done three road races, but that was enough to learn that teammates are helpful. I don't know much a
bout them, so I'm not sure what to expect. But I figure there must be some pretty fast guys riding with them and hopefully I can ride with them this summer and improve my speed. Plus I want to improve my bike handling skills and paceline skills. It's very rare I get a good paceline going with the guys at work (I've given up at this point). I'm looking forward to getting out for some rides with them and meeting some local cyclists outside of work.


That's the weather for the week. A high of 36 on Saturday, and right now I'm debatin
g how many miles I can stand in 36 degree weather. Can I do another 75 miles? That's pretty cold for a ride that long. I'm debating doing two loops and stopping at home in the middle to warm up and change if I overdress and sweat so I'm not riding in wet clothes.

I'm afraid I might be doing too much too early in the season, but right now all I want to do is ride my bike. I don't know where the motivation came from suddenly (because my motivation was at an all time low for a while there), but I have been putting in some killer rides lately - 90 minute tempo rides at nearly 250 watts. There's no way I could've done that last winter. If I did 20 minutes of tempo last winter I needed a nap. Now I'm doing 90 minutes straight and going home and planning a threshold ride for 2 days later. It's crazy.

I'm afraid I'm going to get burned out, but for now I'm going to ride this wave and see where it takes me. At this pace, I think I might be able to race the Hillsboro Roubaix and not entirely humiliate myself. I wonder if registration is still open. Hmmmm.....


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