Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Jun-30: End of a beautiful month

Jun-30:

BJP-backlot: Coley-DocN-Kemp-Virgil-ShadyGrove; 39.0 m.; est 1584 ft climbed ---> effort index = 54; 2hrs, 14min; 17.4 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 16 rides, 654.6 m.; 41 hrs, 16 min; 15.8 mph.
YTD: 63 rides; 2879.6 m.; 182 hrs, 25 min; 15.8 mph.

Not much to say. Started reasonably well. Then picked up the pace, and worked to maintain that higher pace. I wonder if the Sunday section w/ Lynn (and the miles following) helped me find and keep the cadence / effort?

I will defintely have to relax the legs between now and Friday.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Jun-28: Catch a Shooting Star

Jun-28:

PUE: to BJP, to marina w/ Dalton's tourists, some BaptistRd + DocN-LeesvilleRd-CarpPond to Hickory Grove w/ Lynn, to BJP, to PUE; 52.8 m.; est 2167 ft climbed ---> effort = 74; 3hrs, 11min; 16.6 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 15 rides, 615.6 m.; 39 hrs, 2 min; 15.8 mph.
YTD: 62 rides; 2840.6 m.; 180 hrs, 11 min; 15.8 mph.

When I went to prep my bike, I discovered that my blinkie was missing. Saaad. 3 months I had that blinkie & this is the second blinkie I have lost in the last eight months because it "popped" off. Rats.

I rode the roads I rode yesterday, paying particular attention in BJP near the speed bump I had to negotiate yesterday. No blinkie. Saaad.

The Tourists were just about to start their ride, so I joined them. The Tourists were a reasonable lot today. Only one of them I wouldn't want to ride with -- all the rest were predictable and rode a straight line.

Anyway, I saw Lynn leaving the "marina" area just as the Tourists got there. During the ride back up Baptist, I saw Lynn torching back down Baptist -- obviously looking for low-traffic miles to complete her second "ride easy" 100-miler of the weekend. When the Tourists got to Neal School, I turned back to look for Lynn, figuring a few miles chasing her would be worth a lot more training-wise than continuing with the Tourists.

I found Lynn a couple miles down Baptist. She was about 80 miles into her ride; I was at about mile 32 of mine. I was avging about 15.3 mph at that point.

Lynn led the first mile and more up Baptist, but was tired and flagging after taking a drink from her water bottle, so I came around and took the lead. That's right, I came around and pulled "Superwoman", the rest of the way up Baptist.

I asked where next. Over to do Doc Nichols, then Carpenter Pond to Hickory Grove and then home.

I told her I didn't figure I could keep up with her on Doc Nichols. But she was tired, I was not nearly as tired. She was supposedly on an "easy" ride, I was giving it almost all I had. And I been mountain riding recently. I kept up with Lynn. More than that, I took the lead near the top of Doc Nichols and then pulled her along on Leesville Rd, and then on Carpenter Pond to Harrington Grove Rd. I refused to give in on the little bump-up on Carpenter Pond to Harrington Grove Rd.

Lynn turned onto Harrington Grove. I continued straight. Glad that I no longer was needing to pull "Superwoman". After those approx 11 miles with Lynn, my avg pace had reached 16.3 mph. I figure I avg'd around 18.5 mph while with Lynn. That includes the 1.9 miles UP Doc Nichols.

Although I needed to back off just a little -- I rode up the bump on Carpenter Pond up to Kemp Rd at 13.5 mph -- I kept on going strong, which is, after all, how I usually ride that section. I rode all the way over to BJP instead of stopping at PUE just to get some free water at the park faucette. Spoke with Dalton for a few minutes. Then rode back to PUE.

Amazing how the legs start to tighten up in just a few minutes. I had to work them loose again when I restarted the ride. But I was riding well by the time I cleared the park / crossed Six Forks Rd.

Very happy I hung with "Superwoman" and then kept the pace. Of course, riding 18+ mph for 20 miles is nothing compared to riding that pace (or near it) on a solo, recovery 100-miler the day after having done a 100-miler. Lynn did have help on Saturday; about 50 miles worth of help (if I recall correctly).
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[edit]
Hey, 20 miles at Lynn's pace made this ride #12 on the list of my "20 fastest rides of the year." (So far; I'm willing to bet there will be more, faster rides to come.)
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[more edit]
I finally pried some information out of Lynn. On her Saturday Century, her friend Blay rode with her for about 50 miles, and two of Blay's friends joined them for about 35 miles. Lynn said the last two were really riding faster than she wanted to ride / was supposed to ride, but she just tucked in and sucked wheels -- after all, she was riding 100 miles, and they were all going much shorter. Her average pace for Saturday ended up being a bit over 19 mph. Quote: "No wonder I was tired."

Sunday, except for the little bit I rode with her, she did solo. I broke a rule and sneaked a peak at her confuser: 16.6 mph avg for the Sunday Century.

Both days, she started at about 5:45 and was finished before noon. That is possible for Sunday, because even though her ride time was a minute or two or three over six hours, her stoppage time was almost nil. She "re-watered" at BJP once and the "marina" at the bottom of Baptist Rd once. Fill up and go stops; no standing around.

It seems pretty sad that the best I can average for 53 miles is what Lynn averaged for 100 miles for the second day, after having avg'd much faster than that the previous day.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Jun-27: crap

Jun-27:

PUE: several loops of PUC Rd + 1 MVC valley loop; w/ BJP throne stops thrown in; 29.2 miles, 1hrs, 48min, 16.1 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 14 rides, 562.8 m.; 35 hrs, 51 min; 15.7 mph.
YTD: 61 rides; 2787.8 m.; 177 hrs, 0 min; 15.7 mph.

Unhappy bowels --> stay close to a throne. What did I eat to cause this?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Jun-26

Jun-26:

BJP-back lot: DocN-Kemp-Virgil; 30.0 m.; est 1359 climbed --> effort = 43; 1hrs, 45min; 17.1 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 13 rides, 533.6 m.; 34 hrs, 3 min; 15.7 mph.
YTD: 60 rides; 2758.6 m.; 175 hrs, 12 min; 15.7 mph.

SW-erly breeze. Didn't push as hard early & let the wind push me in the last 10.4 miles.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Jun-25: "Speed" work again

Jun-25:

BJP-back lot: DocN-Kemp-Virgil; 30.0 m.; est 1359 cliimbed --> effort = 43; 1hrs, 45min; 17.1 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 12 rides, 503.6 m.; 32 hrs, 18 min; 15.6 mph.
YTD: 59 rides; 2728.6 m.; 173 hrs, 27 min; 15.7 mph.

Hardly even a breeze. Legs did have some residual from Tuesday -- I pushed on -- not quite as fast as Tuesday.

To get to the same avg pace as for all of 2008, in the same number of miles as in all of 2008, I have to AVERAGE 17.0 mph for the next 1036.7 miles. NOT likely.

To get to the same avg pace as for all of 2008, by averaging "only" 16.5 mph until the average gets to that "goal", I have to ride the next 2104.6 miles averaging that 16.5. Again, NOT likely, especially as there are likely to be some more mountain rides. However, my average pace for Jul-Dec '08 (excluding the 2 MS-150 rides) was 16.5 mph -- so, it isn't "impossible" -- just . . . don't bet on it.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Jun-23: new chain & a clean bike

Jun-23:

BJP: DocN-Kemp-Virgil; north breeze / wind; 29.7 m.; est 1359 ft climbed --> effort = 43; 1hrs, 43min, 11sec; 17.3 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 11 rides, 473.6 m.; 30 hrs, 33 min; 15.5 mph.
YTD: 58 rides; 2698.6 m.; 171 hrs, 42 min; 15.7 mph.

New chain, rotated tyres, bike cleaned "professionally". MUCH nicer shifting.

I rode much much more aggressively -- backed off some after the first 19.44 miles in 1:09:40 due to fatiguing legs. I think I have been doing a lot of "soft pedalling" lately. Will need to make a decided effort to "push" the next few rides to get some "serious" cycling ability back / get back in the habit of working a bit harder while cycling.

Now that the "worn-down" tyre has been rotated to the front, the front wheel has to go around more times to get to the same point -- resulting in an apparently longer ride. I am not gong to worry about a tenth here or there, and will just record that which the confuser reports.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Jun-21

Jun-21:

BJP: Leesville Rd - U-turn; blissfully solo; 25.4 m.; est 988 ft climbed --> effort = 35; 1hrs, 32min; 16.5 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 10 rides, 443.9 m.; 28 hrs, 50 min; 15.4 mph.
YTD: 57 rides; 2668.9 m.; 169 hrs, 59 min; 15.7 mph.

Once on the bike, the legs felt a LOT better than I expected. 50 minutes to the turn around (head-wind / warming up tired legs); 42 minutes to get back (certainly the increasing mostly tailwind had nothing to do with that ;-) ).

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Jun-20: Solstice Century

Jun-20

PUE: Franklinton-Mitchener's X-roads-RockyFord-Epsom-Middleburg-return (mostly) via NC BR #1; w/ "Irregulars" Lt. Daaave, the Mallet, the Iceman, Iva, Norris, BobH, the Duke, Phil & guests Mark & Tito; 100.8 miles; est 4314 ft climbed ---> effort = 143; 6hrs, 23min; 15.8 mph avg pace. 

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 9 rides, 418.5 m.; 27 hrs, 18 min; 15.3 mph.
YTD: 56 rides; 2643.5 m.; 168 hrs, 27 min; 15.7 mph. ("Fixed" some of the out-of-sync time riding.)

Just the facts now. I had tired legs from the get-go. Eventually, somewhere around Nutbush Creek, I could not hold on any more (except for short stints when the group waited). Aaargh!

Perhaps "in-depth" description and analysis, later.

[Edit, Sep-15:] est climbing is 4245 ft for the "course proper", plus 69 ft for "pre-ride" miles to get the century.
[Edit, May-2011.  "TrimbleOutdoors" map embedded (below).  Trimble gets a much lower climbing estimate.]


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[Edit:]
Other than to note:
  1. Thanks to the monster known as Phil for dragging me in from Grissom! 
  2. My heart rate at a little after 9 pm was still 84 bpm, and 
  3. I thought about just letting the group "go" on at Middleburg, but decided the honorable thing was to shout "WRONG WAY" ...
There is little else worthy of noting.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Comments from the peloton:

From: PaulN
Date: Sat, Jun 20, 2009 2:57 pm
To: me 

You were right about PaulS.
I tricked him at the Wake County Line and took that sprint.
About a half mile later he caught me and started pulling us at 28 MPH down New Light to the Lake.
I was burned up by the time for Ghoston Hill, so I was last of the group of five to climb it.
Later, on Peed Road hill, PaulS dropped his chain, which allowed me to pass him.
But he caught me again on Mt. Vernon Church road.

About seven of us got in to PUE a few minutes after 1 PM...my ride time for 99.8 miles was 6:03.


Phil & I did not reach 28 mph on any part of Bruce Garner or New Light, unless I did on the "swoop" down to the bridge after the Holly Point bump. But Phil was pullng me in quite quickly for two very tired guys -- at least 23-25 on one or more occassions on the flat stuff.

Anyway, we finished at about 1:20 pm. My confuser had 100.8 miles in 6:23. Took it easy on G-P-MVC and it took 24 minutes to cover that last 4.7 miles.

PaulS really is too strong to ride with us. But he is a nice guy (don't tell him that), and most of the time can be "controlled" to back it down a bit pacewise.

From: Iva
Date: Sat, Jun 20, 2009 5:09 pm
To: Lt. Daaave, PaulS, PaulN, Norris, BobH, BobS, Phil, Tito, me
 

Thanks for a great ride today. As you know, it was my first century which I wouldn't have attempted six months ago, but did today thanks to you and the guys! Tito, BobS, and I went one mile down the road and back to get the 100. I would have stayed longer in the parking lot for post ride festivities, but I was hugely hungry. As usual, thanks for your detailed, well thought out route and for keeping all of us organized and on schedule.

No need to hang around on such a warm day. Glad you went home to cool off.

From: Lt. Daaave
Date: Sat, Jun 20, 2009 7:49 pm
To: PaulS, PaulN, Iva, Norris, BobH, BobS, me

Many thanks to Martin for putting together today’s ride. Very nice course and great company. The clouds were a welcome relief for the sun.

The best part of the planning was arranging for that cloud cover. Now, if only we could have had a NE breeze instead of the W or SW one.

From: BobS
Date: Sat, Jun 20, 2009 8:52 pm
To: PaulS, PaulN, Iva, Norris, BobH, me

Great fun! Appreciate your putting this together. My nap was sweet!

You know, we ought to put at least some of blame for the course on Lt. Daaave -- he of the "I hate an out-and-back course" fame. Otherwise, I might not have thought of the idea. (That's a lie, actually; I thought of this course before I knew Dave was so illogically adamant about out-and-back courses.)

From: Tito
Date: Sat, Jun 20, 2009 11:20 pm
To: me

Thanks for including me today. I enjoyed the guys, and the route itself was superb ---- little traffic, beautiful countryside and more. Your leadership was stellar.

Tito must be referring to my "leadership" from far back of the pack. Falling off the pace did have one major advantage -- I was behind Norris and BobH when they were struggling with their heart-rates just northeast of Oxford, but luckily I was close enough to call out that they were missing a turn. I am confident that Bob & Norris would have known how to get home once they popped into Oxford on Salem Rd, but it was better that they not.

I think I saw Tito on Sunday morning riding with yet another of his (apparently many) cycling acquaintences while I struggled westward on Carpenter Pond Rd into the breeze. Tito had the wind at his back.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Jun-18: Spin out the legs ?

Jun-18:

BJP / back lot: DocN-Kemp-Virgil; 29.9 m.; est 1359 ft climbed --> effort = 43; 1hrs, 48 1/2 min; 16.5 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 8 rides, 317.7 m.; 19 hrs, 32 min; 15.2 mph.
YTD: 55 rides; 2542.7 m.; 162 hrs, 0 min; 15.7 mph.

First rational chance to spin out the legs after last weekend / in preparation for Saturday. Legs had more tiredness / stiffness in them early in the ride than I expected. Typical SW breeze helped slow the early part of the ride and speed the end. Quite warm. At least I finally got faster on this course.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Jun-12 to 14: Summary thoughts

The weather could not have been better!

Highs in the mid-70s; lower than that during the late morning hours when we were riding.
No humidity.
No headwinds the entire weekend.
A mix of sunshine and partly to mostly overcast. The latter much appreciated on exposed climbs.

Very nice scenery almost all the time.

Not more than a few potholes the whole weekend. And those were quite small.

An "acceptable" riding partner and otherwise great camping partners.

Great weekend.

Jun-14: Fairview Ch Rd

Jun-14:

Rocky Knob (BRP mile 167): BRP - VA-8 - Fairview Ch Rd - BRP; w/ DntW; 15.6 miles; est 1824 ft climbed --> effort index = 34; 1hrs, 19min; 11.8 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 7 rides, 287.8 m.; 17 hrs, 43 min; 15.1 mph.
YTD: 54 rides; 2512.8 m.; 160 hrs, 10 min; 15.7 mph.

A short ride to cap the weekend. Staying at US Park Service Rocky Knob campground at BRP mile marker 167.

Dave had done this ride several times previously. I think he tests himself by "measuring" how much of the two steep gravel parts of Fairview Ch Rd he has to walk.

Fairview Ch Rd is a lightly traveled, scenic, asphault road with several tough climbs and then it makes a 90-degree left turn, flips up and becomes gravel all at once. About 3 miles of gravel to get back to the parkway. Two sections of STEEP gravel. I didn't even try to fool myself. I immediately went to walking / pushing the bike when the road turned to gravel -- it was S-T-E-E-P, and did I mention it was gravel. Unlike the section on Friday, this gravel was dry, and had a lot of loose gravel and pebbles strewn about the packed down "tire-lanes". After the first steep section was, I got back on the bike. But dismounted upon reaching the second S-T-E-E-P section. Re-mounting after the slope relaxed.

Dave rode some of the first steep, and I assume he rode at least some of the second steep - I was ahead of him due to his nature break before the first steep, and too far behind at the second steep to see him.

After the second steep, there were some flat sections, some short descent complete with fresh, very loose gravel, and some short "bump-ups". Theses sections were very nice with complete tree canopies and wide-open pastures as so often seen from the parkway on our left.

Tough ride. I figure I walked at least half-a-mile.

Map:  Rocky Knob - Fariview Ch Rd loop

Jun-13: Rocky Knob - Oh, boy!

Jun-13:

Rocky Knob (BRP mile 167): BRP - VA-8 to Woolwine - VA-40 - 860 - BRP; w/ DntW; 34.7 miles, 2hrs, 46min, 12.5 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 6 rides, 272.2 m.; 17 hrs, 43 min; 15.3 mph.
YTD: 53 rides; 2497.2 m.; 158 hrs, 51 min; 15.7 mph.

Main event (?) for the weekend. Staying at US Park Service Rocky Knob campground at BRP mile marker 167.

Dave had never done this ride before. I think he said he had never dropped off the east side of the BRP previously. He'd always gone off the west side and from car travel to see various sites in the area, was convinced that the east side was more precipitous than the west side. Afterwards, he concluded that his previous perception was correct.

Virginia highway # 8 off the east side of the BRP down to Woolwine is V-E-R-Y technical. I could smell my brake pads even BEFORE we got to the hairpins. I had to learn F-A-S-T how to be better at "pulsing" the brakes so as to not overheat the rims and . . . kill myself. First "technical descent" ever for me. I may go online to a mapping site and figure out the number of hairpins and the elevation descended (and the number of miles to get that descent).

Virginia highway # 40 promised to be interesting. There was a big yellow sign on VA-8 before the turn, and again on VA-40 after the turn, warning tractor-trailer rigs not to use VA-40. Very scenic for the first miles: repeated big rollers requiring the 30-25 or at least the 30-23, and the fog lines kept disappearing. Then it got tougher. We knew we were in for some fun when we saw the 15 mph curve sign -- instead of descending a hairpin, we were about to climb one or more. In the event, it was only one hairpin -- the rest was just hard, straight climbing until we got to VA SR 860 (like a NC SR backroad). It was about mile 21 of our ride.

We took a break, supposedly so we'd have fresher legs for 860, which would take us all the rest of the way back up to the BRP. I write supposedly, because another reason might have been to allow at least two heart rates to come back down a bit.

The first thing 860 did was give back all of the elevation the last climb on VA-40 had gained, probably including the hairpin. That descent, on not the smoothest of surfaces one might like to ride, brought us alongside a creek -- Shooting Creek. Shooting Creek was to be our more-or-less constant left-side companion until the last little bit of climbing which would pop us out onto the pastures around and above the BRP. There were quite a few little stream tumbling down on our right, most going under 860 / Shooting Creek Rd below us on hidden culverts, but some spilling across the roadway. In many places there was a constant stream of run-off water rapidly running downstream along the very edge of the asphault and then the entire contents of the roadside "stream" would spill across the road whenever the kant of the road would change. Nothing dangerous, though -- or at least it didn't seem dangerous.

The Shooting Creek gorge was beautiful in that it was a COMPLETE tree canopy tunnel for the entire time that the creek was our companion. I would hate to think about doing that climb exposed to a hot sun for the whole distance!

The road was not as steep as the NC state park road up to the top of Hanging Rock, but it was steeper than Sauartown Mtn Rd, and longer than either of those easier climbs. I could see Dave ahead of me most of the time, but he gradually edged ahead. Finally, I decided, when holding 4.0 mph seemed impossible, that I did not know how much longer this climb would continue -- Dave had "reconnoitered" on "veloroutes", but he didn't remember how long the climb continued -- and if it continued on for another two or three or four miles that I'd never make it. So, I dismounted and started walking / pushing the bike. I came around a corner and saw that Dave was doing the same. A bit more walking and I came to where Dave had decided the road was "flat" enough to re-mount and continue the climb. I re-mounted at the same point -- having walked almost exactly one-quarter of a mile.

After the restart, the slope had obviously relaxed (?) a little, and 5.5 mph almost seemed easy (no -- it was still work, but it was 5.5 instead of 4.0 or 4.5). It turned out that only four-tenths or forty-five-hundredths of a mile after we re-mounted we popped out of the tree tunnel into pastureland and the road did truly flatten. There was even a descent or two, immediately followed by small ups, and then, and then, we were descending a little hill to the parkway! (It was about mile 27.3 of our ride.)

One annoying thing occurred just as I pushed off to re-continue (?) the climb: a horsefly took a big bite out of my back right atop my spine andbetween the shoulder blades -- that location that no normal mortal can touch. I concentrated on the climb and that put the pain out of mind, or at least reduced the noticeable pain. When we got to the parkway, I started to shivvy out of my jersey while asking Dave to brush the pest away -- it felt as if it was still munching away. I didn't have to lift the jersey; the horsefly was on the outside of the jersey, enjoying its meal THROUGH the material of the jersey. Dave brushed the horsefly away, killing it in the motion; he did mention later that I did have a sizeable welt.


We later agreed that if we had known that we "only" had seven-tenths of a mile climbing left when we each independently decided to dismount, we each could have soldiered on without dis-mounting.

Wonderful! All we had left was seven miles of rolling parkway (Dave had thought it might be as many as 13 miles). Parkway descents could be taken full out since one could be confident that there would not be sudden turns or bad pavement around the curve, and the ascents, although in the 30-25 (maybe the 30-23) were as picnics compared to Shooting Creek Rd.

Nice scenery, excellent ride.

Tired? No, not at all. R-I-G-H-T-!
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The following includes a mistake in that I forgot to map the exit ramp off the BRP onto VA-8, so the route is 1/2 a mile short, blah, blah.

http://veloroutes.org/bikemaps/?route=40580


Jun-12: Rocky Knob - Floyd loop

Jun-12:

Rocky Knob (BRP mile 167): BRP - Floyd - & loop back around; w/ DntW; 28.0 miles, 2hrs, 1min, 13.8 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 5 rides, 237.5 m.; 14 hrs, 57 min; 15.8 mph.
YTD: 52 rides; 2462.5 m.; 156 hrs, 5 min; 15.8 mph.

Opening teaser for the weekend. Staying at US Park Service Rocky Knob campground at BRP mile marker 167.

The "loop back around" to get back up to the BRP included a very nice rural road that itself included at least 1 1/2 miles on gravel - luckily flat, slightly damp, and no new, loose gravel, so it was excellent riding. I don't know if I can figure out what roads we took -- without asking Dave, that is. He knows.

Nice vistas and scenic views (how's that for redundancy?). Very nice ride.

This weekend is gonna' kill my June and YTD avg pace measures. Dave suggested that I ought to track amont of climbing.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Jun-11: Spin-out-the-legs

Jun-11:

BJP: DocN-Kemp-Virgil; 29.6 m.; est 1359 ft climbed --> effort = 43; 1hr, 49min; 16.2 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 4 rides, 209.5 m.; 12 hrs, 56 min; 16.2 mph.
YTD: 51 rides; 2434.5 m.; 154 hrs, 4 min; 15.8 mph.

Have been wanting to "spin-out-the legs" since Tuesday. This morning was last chance before the weekend as Dave is dragging me camping somewhere on the Blue Ridge with short, but intense rides for each of Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

I have been getting slower at this ride all year:

Feb-10, 1hr, 45min, 16.8 mph.
Mar-30, 1hr, 46min, 16.7 mph.
Apr-21, 1hr, 47min, 16.6 mph.
Jun-11, 1hr, 49min, 16.2 mph.

What is with THAT ! ?

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Skepticism over Rushmore's story

Date: Mon, 8 Jun 2009 1:34 pm

Well, even though I left PUE @ ~ 12:10-12:15 for the additional 26 miles, I wouldn't be surprised that the wrench was still there at 12:45, or that that wrench would have talked to you until 1:00 or later.

However, I don't recall any other vehicles being in the PUE parking lot when I finished the additional 26 miles. I could be wrong about that. But I am wondering if you are just making up stories to make Snapper worry that you are truly getting in too much training and into too good a shape.

On Jun-20th, you are required to stay behind the pack, back with the "Mallet", for at least the first 27 miles of the ride. And if you start riding 20 mph on the 20th, just keep riding at that pace. Don't get lost.

Snapper comments

Date: Mon, 8 Jun 2009 1:27 pm

I smell fish.

Rushmore's creative story

Date: Mon, 8 Jun 2009 1:18 pm

Well let’s see, I’ll have to work backwards, I ended up back at PUE at 4:30, took a short break at the Service USA store at the corner of Antioch Rd and 158 just east of Oxford (a tad over 62 miles), averaged a tick over 19 going out, a tick under 20 coming back, so must have left about 1:00? I ran into a guy with a white van with an advertisement for bicycle repair (wish I had met him earlier, could have probably got my spoke fixed a lot sooner than going to 20 different bike shops), chatted it up with him for about 10 mins, so I probably showed up at PUE at about 12:45 or so.

A challenge to Rushmore

Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 12:39 PM

And just what time of the day are you "pretending" that you got to PUE? Think carefully before answering: 6:06 am start, 4hrs, 38min in-motion plus some down-time for two refueling breaks and several nature breaks (BobH & Norris were as needful on that score as Iva), plus 50 minutes lunch break, plus the time to ride the 26+ miles, plus time to stretch and pack up.

Now, when did you supposedly get to PUE?


Re: "Now I know Cheetah was sleeping in":

I won't say who, but his initials are BWD, regailed the "did-show" group with some stories, such as "Harris & I had to go to his house and wake him up" to drag him to a scheduled Tri. Wait! He could have been talking about the Duke -- I'm not sure as they were trying to drop me off their front while BWD was story-telling so I was only getting snippets of the stories.

Rushmore claims he is not a slacker

Date: Mon, 8 Jun 2009 11:16 am

Now I know Cheetah was sleeping in, but I had a broke spoke that I needed to get fixed that morning, then headed up to PUE and did a 62 mile ride out-and-back at a leisurely pace as to ensure I stay with the boys next time I’m out, speaking of which, Harvey and I will be at a race this next Saturday, I am hoping he doesn’t draft off me!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Jun-7: The "Mallet" Hammers

Jun-7:

PUE: Creedmoor-Grissom; w/ PaulS (aka, "Mallet" (?)); 47.1 miles, 2hrs, 57min, 16.0 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 3 rides, 179.9 m.; 11 hrs, 7 min; 16.1 mph.
YTD: 50 rides; 2404.9 m.; 152 hrs, 15 min; 15.8 mph.

6:02 am ride start. 9:09 ride finished. Then Paul rode home - he anticipated being home early enough to get in a run around Shelley Lake.

I started quite slowly, but I just spun along until the legs loosened up some. Paul rode along side chatting, or pulled me along at a pace suitable for me to stay attached. We pushed the 6 miles on Bruce Garner / New Light pretty good. Well, I did. Paul was just humorimg me.

Good company. Good morning to ride. Good ride.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Jun-6: BigWaveDave returns

Jun-6:

PUE: Michener's X-roads - Bobbitt - EgyptMtnRd - PhiloWhite-Grissom-G-P-MVC / lunch / LeesvilleRd-ShadyGroveLoop; w/ Iva, BobH, Norris for 74 m. + BigWaveDave for ~ 25 m.; Irregulars ride: 73.8 m.; est 3323 ft climbed; 4hrs, 38min; 15.9 mph; post-lunch add-on: 26.6 m.; est 899 ft climbed; 1hr, 37min; 16.4 mph; total ride: 100.4 m.; est 4322 ft climbed ---> effort index = 143; 6hrs, 15min; 16.0 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 2 rides, 132.8 m.; 8 hrs, 10 min; 16.2 mph.
YTD: 49 rides; 2357.8 m.; 149 hrs, 18 min; 15.8 mph.

BWDave rode with us to Michener's X-Roads, then he U-turned and high-tailed it back to PUE so he could make his appointment with the Boy Scouts. Good to see you, Dave.

BobH, Norris, Iva and I had a great & scenic ride under overcast skies and cool temps. Several new roads for each of us, including me.

Upon returning to PUE, I fixed myself two sandwiches (turkey & blah cheese), drank some chocolate milk, and concluded I'd likely never get more favorable conditions in which to "sneak" in a 100-miler. So, I did the extra.

It is important to carefully choose the course one rides because, although we were avg'ing 16.0 before the turn onto Ghoston and after the turn off Peed, "warm-down" mode on MVC resulted in the avg pace for the first 74 miles being only 15.9 mph. However, even with tired legs and not exactly a helpful wind, I managed 16.4 mph for the 26 mile segment, resulting in an overall avg for the entire 100 miles of 16.0 mph. Woo-hoo!

There were three "no-show" "slackers" today: Rushmore, Snapper, and the Duke. Their loss. They won't have that comforting feeling of knowing the initial 27 miles of the solstice course.

I saw Jessi & Melissa just as I was prepping to do the extra 26 miles. Apparently it is "game on" on the tease front. They seem to think they can out-tease me by suggesting that they are afraid of hurting my ego by out-climbing me if they come to Irregulars rides. I guess they don't quite understand that EVERYONE (except "Ba-room!") climbs faster than me. It is nothing to have 5, 6, 8 riders zip past me on the upslope as if I were standing still. Getting passed by some svelt young females is not going to damage my phycee.

(I must mention serendipitous "pick-ups" Jen & Sean for the first 22 of the 26; but as I led for all but about 2 miles, I can certainly claim that the pace of the 26 was entirely mine as if solo. However, I wonder if I would have been as motivated to keep-on keepin'-on at the same pace if I had been truly solo.)

As I was packing up after stretching after the extra miles, a big fire truck went past PUE and tooted its horn at me. I waved assuming that it had to be Luuuu-TEN-ant Daaave at the wheel.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Jun-3

Jun-3:

PUE: FireStation + DocN-Patterson-Kemp; w/ Jessica, Melissa, Julia; 32.4 miles, 1hr, 55min, 16.8 mph avg pace.

1st Qt. tot: 20 rides; 755.3 m.; 47 hrs, 31 min; 15.9 mph.
Apr tot: 13 rides; 666.4 m.; 42 hrs, 58 min; 15.5 mph.
May tot: 14 rides, 803.1 m.; 50 hrs, 39 min; 15.8 mph.
Jun tot: 1 ride, 32.4 m.; 1 hr, 55 min; 16.8 mph.
YTD: 48 rides; 2257.4 m.; 143 hrs, 3 min; 15.8 mph.

I had tentatively planned to do a 30-ish mile ride from BJP at around 5 pm. Then I got an e-mail from Jessica: I knew what it would say even before I opened it: "is 'such-and-such' a reasonable late afternoon route?" "Standard" lake loop starting from PUE @ 5:30 -- that would be okay. A little harassment on my part and a (probably) not-entirely-meant invitation to join J & M for their ride.

I went to BJP a little early and prepped the bike, thinking to warm-up until J & M started their ride. But then I thought "what if they start 15 or 20 minutes late, and there is a mechanical or something? I might be pushing the 9 pm closing time for BJP mighty fine." I decided to drive the car and bike over to PUE.

I rode only 2 1/2 miles round trip from PUE to the Bayleaf fire station on Norwood near Creedmoor Rd, returning to PUE just a couple minutes before 5:30. No Jessi, no Melissa, but I recognized a friend of Jessi's whose name turned out to be Julia. About 5:35, Melissa arrived, and a few minutes later Jessi arrived. About 5:47 I started riding, hoping the others would be right behind me -- we were already looking at 8:17 or so for a finish time if we had no problems and took no breaks.

I would have been better off continuing to ride "warm-up" instead of standing in the PUE parking lot waiting for J & M to be ready, as when we got to Old Creedmoor Rd, Melissa took the lead and instantly was dragging us at a pace that I thought I might regret later -- either worn out or my right leg might become painful. A little past half-way between Kemp and Coley, Melissa appeared to drift slightly to the left, so I quickly asked if she was pulling out; I tried to make it sound like I was just asking an informational question, not make it sound like the prayer it actually was. Luckily, after pulling strongly for those 3 + miles, Melissa was ready to drift to the back of the line and I took over the lead.

I tried to come close to matching the pace that M had set, but wanted to back off the equivalent of about a mile per hour as I thought that would be just enough slower to allow my right leg to warm up without suffering bad consequences. I stayed in the lead for the rest of Carpenter Pond and then pulled out so that Jessi could lead us across Leesville Rd. The pace and terrain was now such that I could handle both while still continuing to warm up. Two of us needed nature breaks by the time we turned onto Doc Nichols, so the women road a completely separate ride than I did on the Doc.

I think I took the lead when we pulled away from the stop sign at Doc Nichols / Olive Branch -- not because I was all that interested in leading again, but because with the initial half-mile downslope, I knew I would be better off in the front where my gravity advantage would be a boon and not the hinderance it would have been had I been behind the three svelt women. After a LONG wait for cars at NC-98, we finally managed to do the six-tenths of a mile on the highway across to Patterson. Again, I wanted to stay in the lead, at least for the first long downslope run on Patterson. At the first upslope, all three women passed me and then I just dangled off the back all the way across to Cheek.

As we approached Cheek, the weather seemed to be closing in, the wind picked up significantly, and there was one bright flash of lightening. During a quick pow-wow, we decided the smarter thing to do would be turn and get back to PUE as fast as we could. I don't know if I was finally warmed up, if the terrain on Patterson from Cheek to NC-98 favors my limited "climbing" abilities, or if I was more scared about the lightening than the women, but on almost every upslope I found that I would have to back off my pace because they were dropping me off their front. After careful consideration during the latter part of that 3 1/2 miles, and needing a wedge with which to harass Jessi & Melissa in the future, I decided to go with the story that "warmed up, I just was a faster climber". This will allow me to repeatedly point out to them how much stronger they would be if only they joined the Irregulars once in a while on Saturday mornings instead of just leaching the cue sheets. Yep, that's it: the slowest climber of the Irregulars is a faster climber than the svelt women.

I think the three women plotted a kind of revenge for the first climb on Kemp: after crossing the bridge at the bottom of the first valley, all three of them went past me like I was standing still. Sort of like all five of the guys did last Saturday at an interesting point in the Range Rover ride. I chuckled to myself. Esp. when Jessi & Julia slowed and I began to reel them back in well before reaching that first summit near Virgil; they gotta' realize that if you're gonna' make a statement goin' upslope, you gotta' carry that statement all the way to the top. Anyway, I swooped around Jessi & Julia on the way down to the bottom of the second valley, catching Melissa just as we got to the really bad surface that is nothing but patches. Melissa slowly pulled away on the climb up to Coley, and Jessi & Julia appeared to be deep in important conversation and just mosied their way up. This pattern repeated on the last valley and climb on Kemp leading up to Carpenter Pond.

By the time we reached Carpenter Pond, I had decided to turn the ride back to PUE from Cheek into a long "hot interval", so I pressed the pace all the way to Mt. Vernon Church Rd and then across to NC-50. Melissa stayed in my slip-stream the entire way; I think Jessi & Julia may have continued their engrossing conversation. As I usually do when ending a ride at PUE, I backed off some on the last climb on MVC up to PUE, but not as much as I usually do. The women all swept past and zoomed up the hill in good time.

As we approached PUE, the women informed me that they were going to add more miles to get to their desired 40-mile ride; I chose to stop because I had accomplished my original goal for the day: a 30-ish mile fast (?) tempo ride. I also thought the young women might enjoy their post-ride conversation a bit more if there wasn't an "old guy" hanging around.

And I also had some ammunition with which to harass J & M for the coming weeks. The only question is how much harassment will be too much. After all, they are are sugar and spice, not nails and puppy dog tails, so I don't know that I can conduct a six month harassment program as I did with Iva. And teasing Iva about probably having turned his bike into a couple new golf clubs is better material for amusing harassment than teasing the svelt women about how I out-climbed them when it counted.