Recovery Day Ride – “Around the Block” – May 13, 2012

We usually leave weekends for one bigger ride, and then reserve the other day for non-cycling adventures. With Ben off the bike lately, that has translated into me going for a ride and Ben staying home..
But today when i proposed a walk/hike, Ben said he had done some running yesterday, so wanted to ride the bike. Perhaps the Alta Alpina looming a bit more than 1 month away is a motivating factor. Whatever the reason, who am i to argue and this certainly came as a welcome surprise, so I readily jumped at the chance to go for a nice, short loop with my “sweatie”… .thinking we’d just ride around the neighborhood…
“Where do you want to go” i asked innocently, “something flattish? Bay Trail?”
No, he had no interest whatsoever in the Bay Trail, but instead said he wanted to go “around the block”…. and by the time we got through “stop sign route” near the left turn at Amador, he clarified that meant “SPDR/Wildcat”.
Despite my 94+ miles yesterday, my strength was pretty good, and surprisingly (or maybe not surprisingly… have you seen those thighs/calfs on Ben?), Ben was motoring along pretty briskly, too. We also enjoyed a tailwind through the commercial section of SPDR, making that otherwise somewhat icky stretch fly by nicely.
Once on SPDR, we traded leading/drafting a bit and made a nice little mini-train with our combined power. Ben noted we reached Castro Ranch Rd in about 1/2 hour (usually it’s more like 45-55 minutes), and we dropped or caught few other cyclists on SPDR traveling the same direction rather than the other way around. Somewhere just short of Wildcat, Ben noted we were about 2 minutes to go to make SPDR/Wildcat within an hour, so we sprinted for as long as I could hold up, Ben making the corner at 1:00:03 and me at 1:00:06. What a blast!! Up Wildcat, Ben zoomed on ahead (wow!), and my energy held up to the last few turns before Inspiration Point, heading into the wind at that point. After a brief break in the cinderblock house, with the first faint rain drops threatening, we put our warmer layers on for the cool, breezy traverse across the Canyon and final descent down Spruce. Definitely felt some good power today and it was FUN!! Got going over 20 mph in the last 1/2 mile
on Wildcat for long stretches at a time and the potholes and patches were done before i knew it.

at the bottom of Spruce, through Marin circle down to the lower section of Los Angeles and back on The Alameda for the home stretch, the light at Solano held green and i turned on the engine, flying past Ben for the rest of the rise past Capistrano and then down San Lorenzo, where Ben caught up and then led out back home.

“around the block”, and then some. one of these days i’ll have to learn the vernacular! Lovely day…. great ride.. and the most fun part is, it still feels like a “rest day”.

Fun, short, sweet. My ride:

23.85 miles
13.3 mph
28.8 max
900 ft approx. climbing (??)

Got the house chores done in the a.m., finished another stage of Giro-viewing, now i’m off for the shopping errands…
Life is good.


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