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One of my best rides ever last night !- 15.28 miles/16.7 avg(12 posts)

One of my best rides ever last night !- 15.28 miles/16.7 avgTNSquared
Dec 10, 2003 10:32 AM
OK, if you're thinking that doesn't sound like much, you're absolutely right. Even as my own riding goes, that is very short and pretty darn slow. However, there were a number of variables last night that could easily have served as an excuse not to ride at all, such as:

1) suffering from a nasty cold induced by Sunday's wet, cold cyclocross race (btw - posted my race report on cx forum today for anyone interested)
2) extreme soreness also induced by aforementioned race
3) working on about 3 hours sleep the night before
4) still working off drugged feeling from intentional overdose of Nyquil at around 3 a.m.
5) worked late and didn't arrive home until 7:30 p.m.
4) steady cold rain
5) dark
6) steady winds with frequent gusts of 45+ mph
7) needed to pay bills and do a load of laundry
8) freshly delivered pizza sitting on the breakfast bar

Last night's ride was not about how far, or even how fast. It was about getting out the door. On the drive home from work I all but talked myself out of riding. I felt miserable and tired and really just wanted to go directly to bed. I had plenty of "reasons" not to ride, and only one reason to ride - me. Although short, the ride completely transformed my disposition and by the time I pulled back into my garage I was pumped. I felt renewed both physically and mentally.

Someone posted a few weeks ago about riding in miserable weather. I've learned that I can sort of trick myself into getting out even when I don't feel like it. Last night, I told myself I would just do one 3 mile loop so I could say I rode. Once I got out there, it was not nearly as bad as I had dreaded. I actually started enjoying the different sensations of the lights in the rain, fighting headwinds and sailing with tailwinds, and enjoying myself. As an added bonus, all my whining and stress from the day was forgotten. I would have gone further except that the forecasts for severe thunderstorms began to come to fruition. I don't mess with lightning. :)

I am now doubly committed not to allow convenient excuses to keep me from riding. Injury, illness and severe weather aside, you're almost always better off by getting out there than not.
those were some nasty winds last nightJS Haiku Shop
Dec 10, 2003 10:42 AM
you should join us thursday nights starting at 5:45 for a 30-mile dark ride. two small bumps in the road. very casual. if you can get there, do it!

one of my best ever rides was 140 miles in illinois on march first. 3" of snow the night before. it was glorious. a piddling 14.5 mph--takes a bit of caution to cross icy farm roads and salted corners & embankements. the ride organizer advised against us riding. of course i'd driven 4 hours to get there, late the night before.

the next illinois ride was perhaps my least & most favorite of all time. you want wind? :)
I fully understand your predicamentvelocity
Dec 10, 2003 11:11 AM
At times I have the same ambivalence. If I get myself out though invariably I find myself feeling pretty damn glad I did. Inclement weather, a bad day, whatever, is relieved by the joy of spinning my legs and experiencing my environment. The short ride I told myself was my fallback option to get my ass out becomes an option I don't fall back on.
Im not one to talk...funknuggets
Dec 10, 2003 11:35 AM
but I agree, sometimes the fastest rides arent the best. I consistently "enjoy" (I use that term loosely) when mother nature throws things your way. Honestly, Im more like a groundhog when it comes to riding on the road in the winter (but I move to mtn, weights, and trainer). But when I do get out and turn and face giant hills, impossible headwinds, rain or what not... I usually complain for a bit, but then when conditions worsen it usually strikes me as funny and makes me wonder what is next.

I typically call those the infamous "character building" rides. Fun, but not fun all in the same.

Gee I dunnoCrankist
Dec 10, 2003 1:56 PM
It really sounds like you're overdoing it. Although its agreed that some of the best rides are in adverse conditions, I wouldn't be out there in that kind of weather when I'm sick.
Dec 10, 2003 2:03 PM
one of my best rides ever was when I was unbelievably hung over... but then again, one of my worst races I was hung over too.

Adverse conditions is a funny term. Could go either way.

Maybe, but my cold is all but gone today...TNSquared
Dec 10, 2003 2:16 PM
I've been suffering from a cold, not the flu. Believe me, if I'd been running a fever or felt seriously ill I'd have skipped the ride, but aside from losing sleep because I can't breathe through snot, I've suffered no real physical effects. I also didn't go out to do a high intesity workout which would likely have made me feel worse.

It comes down to knowing your body and how it will react. Frankly, my cold was not even the primary reason I considered skipping my ride. I was feeling lazy, and down a little bit, and the weather was crummy. And for whatever reason, I feel 200% better today. Slept soundly last night and have only residual congestion at this point.

Anyway, the point of my original post wasn't that I rode through sickness. My real point was that it is always easy to find reasons not to ride if you want to, but it is usually a mistake to do so because you miss a pretty uplifting experience. As I said - injury, illness and severe weahter are the cases where you should not ride.
One thing you wrote struck me...biknben
Dec 10, 2003 6:18 PM
Once you get out on the road...the adverse conditions don't seem so bad.

I experience that also. Since I started commuting last year, I no longer care much about adverse conditions. In many cases, like tonight, I HAD to ride in the rain just to get home. Once I got out there, I was fine. I didn't mind the rain and took a slight detour to lengthen my ride.

I rode through similar conditions (actaully the same storm front). Windy, dark and light rain. It will still be raining tomorrow morning. I'll get up earlier so there will be less traffic to contend with.
Good Rydechar
Dec 10, 2003 7:35 PM
Why didn't you just ride back home from work?
and build more character thru
One reason: Interstate 240......TNSquared
Dec 11, 2003 7:30 AM
Well, I was just waiting for someone to nail me on the commute issue. :) I wish I could!

I live in a far flung suburb and work in downtown Memphis. The distance and rush hour traffic really preclude commuting. Plus, my job requires suit and tie (yes, I'm a corporate cube-farming desk jockey.) I don't have access to a locker room and shower at work, so I just don't know how I'd coordinate it.

When I retire early and take a part time job at the LBS in my area, then I will definitely commute! :)
I have a route for youSpecialTater
Dec 11, 2003 8:16 AM
It's probaby 30 miles, but you can make it ;)

Have fun Sunday. See you next Sunday.
re: One of my best rides ever last night !- 15.28 miles/16.7 avgJ2
Dec 11, 2003 9:55 AM
hey todd, that's awesome! in jackson we had snow! and the wind blowing so hard it made it look like a blizard!