Saturday, March 27, 2021

Mar-27: 55.6-miles today

Longest ride so far this calendar year. 
Also the fastest in-motion avg pace -- marginally, and I mean MARGINALLY, faster than last Sunday's ride. 

Rode approx 28 miles with Gary & Wendy's TLC group ride, at an avg pace clearly less than 13.4-mph.  I know that because after zooming up Virgil Rd at a delightful fast-feeling (unknown avg) pace in the 39/14 gearing, but certainly I avg'd more than 13.4-mph on the 2.1 or 2.3 miles of Virgil Rd -- I checked the distance and avg pace to that point -- 13.4-mph for 30.4-miles -- hmmn, both ending in point-4 seems rather coincidental.  It was at that point, heading slightly downslope on Leesville Rd that I decided I would be more comfortable and faster if I finally-finally shifted out of the 39/14 gear -- [I had not shifted FROM the 39/14 since the middle of November].  Into the 50/14 I went, and kept it there across the remainder of Leesville and all of the downslope Doc Nichols Rd -- I did the 1.9-miles of Doc Nichols in 5m52ec -- I'm confident that I did faster than that years ago, but I'll take that roughly 19.4-mph on DocN.  When I completed DocN, I was avg'ing 13.9-mph since the beginning of the ride.  

Pushed it on the decline and then the incline on Olive Branch Rd to get to NC-98 -- pushed it across NC-98 -- pushed the decline on Kemp Rd and then labored up the Kemp climb to Virgil Rd (with gearing dropping as low as 39/19) -- then zoomed up Virgil again (but not as free-flowing as the first time) -- then pushed across Carpenter Pond and Mt. Vernon Ch Rd to the stop-light and NC-50.  At that point, I had ridden approx 45-miles and the avg pace since the beginning of the ride was 14.2-mph.  

Down and up on MVC to Norwood -- the up slowing me, likely in 39/19 gearing. 
Down and up on Norwood to Six Forks Rd -- the up slowing me, again in the 39/19 gearing. 
Avg pace since the beginning to that point was 14.1-mph.  Distance to that point ~ 50.3 miles. 

I cut through the "Coachman's neighborhood," thus avoiding traffic, but with climbing on short bits through the neighborhood (but a LOT less climbing than if I had taken Honeycutt the whole way).  The climb on Honeycutt from Durant to the overpass atop I-540 was quite hard.  I had pushed the previous ~ 1.3-mile downslope on Durant, but didn't push nearly as hard as I had earlier as described above -- my legs were quite tired -- the "hot interval" having "done them in."  Somehow, even with the last mile on mostly sidewalks, I managed to hold onto 14.1-mph avg pace for the whole ride. 

I won't push nearly so hard in four weeks on Alan's brevet, and with a few more rides, increasing the distance, I reckon I'll be in decent shape to ride slowly and minimize the stoppage time and still get a decent elapsed time.  

Enjoy the ride, 

Mar-21: Carpenter Pond / "TT" Based Route -- 40+ miles

Since overheating during an attempted 100-mile ride in late June-2020, and also overheating during a late July-2020 ride, and given that stopping at convenience stores for re-supply of cold liquids was problematic during the pandemic restrictions, I've been staying closer to "home."  Luckily, there are sufficient appropriate roads quite near my sleep quarters to get in sufficient climbing rides, 40-mile rides, and even the occasional 100+ km ride
My typical goto routes have been versions of the "Possum Tracking" route(s) and a modified version of my "historical" "TT"/cadence route.  The most ridden "TT" modification is 40.4/5 miles and takes me just under three hours to complete.  Three hours is a very nice time-frame for a quick ride.
This ride was the basic "TT"40.5-miler I've been doing since the middle of last year.  For some photos of some semi-scenic spots, click on this link [-- you'll have to scroll down a bit.]  Further, since I've provided links to previous 40-miler "TT" rides, see above "40-mile rides" link, I'll not go into explaining the route. 
When you see the in-motion time and the elapsed time below, you'll know that I took no time to take any photos on this ride.  I also barely noticed anything other than the road and my pedaling during this excursion.  However, one thing I did notice was the pond on Virgil Rd where last year there was frequently three turtles sunning themselves on a log in the middle of the pond -- also, at least once, there were four turtles sunning themselves.  On this date, that pond was VERY full and the log barely broke the surface.  Additionally, since it was not summer, there were exactly zero turtles visible on the log or around the pond or on the road surface or anywhere else. 
Some stats from the ride: 
  • -> Honeycutt + Norwood - "TT" course - Norwood + Honeycutt -> 
  • 1346 start, 60+ degrees F, NE wind    --    2h54 elapsed 
  • 40.4-miles.    2:52 in-motion, i.e., only 2 minutes of stoppage.    14.1-mph avg in-motion. 
    • My fastest ride this year to date. 
  • All in the 39/14 gearing.  And that does make the finishing climbs on MVC, Norwood, and Honeycutt roads a bit difficult.  I forced myself to stay in the faux single-speed even though I was sorely tempted on the last climb on Honeycutt to shift to an easier gear.  [Maybe next ride I'll actually shift for the first time since the middle of November?] 


Mar-20: Two Errands -- One Ride

  • -> ATM -> friend's -> E.MineCrTrail -> 
  • purposes:  
    • get some $$$    
    • put friend's canopy back up (it had been taken down the previous day because of expected severe weather including strong winds), 
    • fix / replace friend's TP holder 
  • 3.94-m to ATM + friend's in 19m44sec  
  • 3.82 returning in 18m45sec 
  • dealing with strong N/NE wind for half the distance 
  • standing all the way, of course, mostly on sidewalks (except the first part to the ATM was on streets)
    • I figure if I'm not riding long, I can get in some "training" by standing the entire distance. 
  • 7.8-miles total.    ~ 38-minutes in-motion.    12.1-mph avg pace in-motion. 
Since the point of the ride was to accomplish the errands (and perhaps get in some "pretend training), I didn't notice much while en route, and certainly had no interest in taking any photos.  

Mar-13: TLC Baptist Marina plus Some Possum Tracking

So that I wouldn't wimp out on riding, I arranged to ride with the TLC group, 
Which supposedly would start their ride at 9 am. 
But I knew they would start late, so I arranged to arrive right at 9. 
No one was ready, so I rode another 2 1/4 miles or so on neighboring streets and 
Also made at least three loops around the Layfayette Square shopping center.
The ride started about 0915. 
I mostly rode with Gary + Wendy, the latter I hadn't seen since before the pandemic. 
In a reasonably safe side-by-side manner, we chatted about subjects of interest to each of us. 
The TLC Saturday morning ride usually goes through the "Coachman's" neighborhood, 
Then crosses Six Forks Rd onto Norwood Rd, 
Then turning onto Mt. Vernon Ch Rd to Old Creedmoor / Carpenter Pond Rd. 
They then turn onto Kemp Rd to Southview Rd to Baptist Rd. 
They ride Baptist down to the boat ramps (marina) at Falls Lake, 
Where they take a break, and then reverse their route back to the store. 
[While taking the break, riders from three or so other small groups also congregated near the rest rooms. 
I decided to keep well away from that mingling crowd (for pandemic reasons).] 
TLC group riders other than G+W zoomed ahead, but I stayed with G+W for some more chatting. 
However, as I told G+W, when we got back to Carpenter Rd, I "zoomed" off to get in some extra miles. 
And climbing. 
Apparently, some of the TLC riders were new and missed the turn onto MVC Rd. 
I found a frequent TLC rider waiting at the intersection where MVC crosses NC-50. 
Rather busy at that intersection -- I think she would have been better served to ride 50 yards and 
Wait at the Peed Rd / MVC Rd corner. 
Anyway, I continued on MVC to Norwood to Six Forks Rd. 
I turned left on Six Forks and continued straight onto Possum Track, and 
Then rode Bay Leaf Ch Rd down to the dead-end next to the lake. 
There, I reversed to climb back up to Possum Track, but 
I did detour through the Falls Bridge neighborhood alongside Bay Leaf Ch Rd, 
Thus adding a little distance and some additional climbing. 
[Because point be told, the exercise of extra miles was more about the climbing than the miles.] 
Down Possum Track to its dead-end, then 
Reverse to Lindley Rd to Shallowford Rd, etc., 
Finally popping out on Hardee Rd to Raven Ridge Rd. 
[As I type this on March 27th, I'm not sure if I turned onto Brassfield Rd, or 
If I stayed on Raven Ridge to Koupela -- the latter would have meant more climbing.] 
  • 51.1 total miles.    ~ 4:01 in-motion.    12.7-mph avg in-motion. 
  • Btw, I guestimate that I was avg'ing 11-mph (or about that) when I broke off from riding with G+W.  Since slightly more than half the total distance was with G+W, one can imagine that I maintained a pretty good (for me) avg pace in-motion during the later half of my ride -- where more than half the climbing was encountered. 


Mar-12: Errand Ride and More

  • -> friend's (to spray more weeds):  Honeycutt-Brassfld-RavenRidge-Koupela -> TLC -> 
  • 1.63-m going, 8m00s,  10.3-m ride, all in 39/14 gearing 
  • standing all the way 
  • 11.9-miles total.    ~ 56-minutes ride time.    12.7-mph avg while in-motion. 
That's all I care to type regarding this ride. 
[Actually, 15 days later as I type this, I don't recall much of anything worth even the above.]

Sunday, March 14, 2021

Mar-07, 09, 11: Even More Errand Rides

Continuing with the minimalist posting(s) for errand rides: 
  •  -> friend's -> TLC-4-Bikes ->  
    • stopped in at the bike shop to chat with owner/mechanic, but he / store was quite busy  
  • (return original of Duke Hosp papers previously picked up Mar-03 for copying / analysis) 
  • colder than sunny apparent 50F should have been -> "shorted" ride 
    • gonna' be hard to get in adequate shape for the late April 200 brevet if I keep "shorting" rides 
  • standing all the way, of course 
  • 4.3-miles total, almost all on sidewalks.    ~ 20-minutes ride time.    12.6-mph. 
  • -> friend's -> E.MineCrTrail ->   (re:  adjust drain pipe pitch) 
  • 1.62-m going,  3.88-m return via hilly n'hood + trail 
    • I've been going and coming via the flat way along the two major roads, but I've decided to start returning via the neighborhood way, which has two or three neighborhood quality (short but steep) climbs each way.  Additionally, if I'm limited to just an errand ride, I've decided to include at least one round trip on the "E. Mine Creek Trail" -- a one-mile each way greenway which is currently unconnected to other greenways -- or at least a "connection" is not obvious to the uninitiated.  
    • By the way, going through the neighborhood on the return and including the greenway, which drops more than 100 feet from the north end to the south end, results in total climbing on the errand-commute route of 39-feet-per-mile (and considering that the "going" 1.62-miles probably has less than 60-feet of total climbing, ...)
  • standing all the way 
  • 5.5-miles total.    ~ 28-minutes ride time.    11.7-mph. 
  •  -> friend's -> E.MineCrTrail ->   (re:  spray weeds) 
  • 1.64-m going,  3.82 return via hilly n'hood + trail  
  • standing all the way 
  • 5.5-miles total.    ~ 27-minutes ride time.    11.9-mph. 


Friday, March 5, 2021

Mar-04: No Clouds, 60+ degrees, but Very Windy

Another "PossumTracking" ride. 
This one rather short as I fit it in between some work and a planned recreational phone call. 
First 3.3-miles round trip to drop off some health + injury claims paperwork back to a friend. 
Then, about 40 minutes of on-line work, which I learned of just as I arrived at the friend's. 
Then, an 18.5-mile "PossumTracking" ride. 
  • all of Honeycutt, then 
  • Bay Leaf Ch Rd to the lake, turn-around and climb back to the intersection with Possum Track Rd, but I did add the Falls Bridge neighborhood loop on the return climb, then 
  • Possum Track all the way to the end, then reverse to 
  • Lindley Rd and through that neighborhood, 
  • to Hardee, Raven Ridge and then onto Brassfield Rd all the way to Durant Rd, then 
  • down the incline of Durant Rd to 
  • Honeycutt, and then back to my abode.  
All while wearing short sleeves and short-legged bibs and short-fingered cycling gloves. 
Perhaps not as much looking around as I might have done, but
I did realize that I was pushing up against the time for the recreational phone call to come in, so 
Even though I thought of taking a couple photographs (of previously photo'd locations), 
I just kept pedaling on. 
IF there is ever anyone that reads this and would like to see a map of the course, 
Check some of the previous "PossumTracking" posts for embedded maps of prior ride maps.

Mar-03: Another Errand Ride

See previous post for background. 
  • -> friend's ->    (get some papers re:  Duke Hosp stuff) 
  • ~ 4:30 pm +,   8m48s going,   8m,18s returning 
  • standing all the way 
  • 3.2-miles total, almost all on sidewalks.    ~ 17-minutes.    11.2-mph.  
For summarization comments, see the previous post. 

Feb-25, 26, 28: More Errand Rides

As noted previously, in prior years I never bothered to record my short errand rides (even up to 8-miles in length) in my Excel log, let alone blog those rides.  However, most of my cycling of late has been short, ~ 3.2-mile round trips to a friend's to help with chores or "chores" or deal with some health insurance claims paperwork; therefore, although perhaps not totally thought out, I decided to start recording and blogging those short rides.  [I could have, perhaps should have, recorded the same rides that I did the first week of January, when I sometimes did multiple round-trips on the same day, but I hadn't thought of recording or blogging them at that time.] 
  • -> friend's ->    (exchange some papers re:  Duke Hosp stuff) 
  • ~ 4pm +,  1.62-m each way,   8m28s going,   8m,04s returning 
  • standing all the way 
  • 3.2-miles total, almost all on sidewalks.    ~ 16-minutes.    11.6-mph.  
  • -> friend's ->   (exchange papers re:  Duke  +  get cooler from shed) 
  • ~ 9am +,  1.62-m each way,   8m40s going,   8m,12s returning 
  • standing all the way
  • 3.2-miles total, almost all on sidewalks.    ~ 16-minutes.    11.4-mph. 
  • -> friend's ->   (put box-fan in crawl-space) 
  • ~ 2pm,  1.62-m each way,   8m18s going,   8m,12s returning 
  • standing all the way
  • 3.2-miles total, almost all on sidewalks.    ~ 16-minutes.    11.6-mph. 


If I would blog these as they happen, I would have a few words regarding conditions and sometimes cars blocking the sidewalk in one or more places; but although those words would make these blog posts more interesting, those words aren't all that important.  What I hope is important is that although these rides are very short, they may be helping to keep me in some kind of cycling shape that I can use as a base to train-up for the April 200 brevet, and the May 300 brevet.