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Thread: August Rides

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    Did an 11 mile ride this morning, at 7:30, with DH. 70 degrees and 100% humidity. Another heat emergency later on. I told DH I did not want to hammer, but he thought I needed a "workout." This is his go-to short route, I've done a slightly different version of it, as what we did today has a left turn onto Main St, from a street with poor sight lines... I don't even do it in my car, as the house on the left hand corner of a T intersection, sticks out into both streets. It is very weird! But, Sunday morning, it's fine. I was pissed the whole ride, and I kept up, but I keep wondering why I get so angry when I have to ride fast. I feel fine now, and my average was very respectable for me, including one annoying climb.
    Hoping for normal New England weather next weekend.
    I understand getting angry when you feel you "have to" ride fast. It's one thing to push yourself to work hard because you want to, but another thing entirely when someone or something is pressuring you to ride above your comfort zone. As for the weather, well, it was 85 degrees when I woke up yesterday at 4:45 am. I would have been thrilled with 70, despite the humidity.

    We had our club's annual picnic ride yesterday. As a ride coordinator I was expected to lead one of the rides. I missed the previous all-club rides this year when I was supposed to lead, so I felt that I did not have the option to miss this one too. As a result I ended up doing a 43-mile ride on a day with excessive heat warnings, very high humidity and temps in the high 90s. There is absolutely no way in hell I would have done anything like this on my own. If it were up to me I would have done a much shorter ride and would have started earlier. I was mostly okay for the first 30 miles. Most of the people I was "leading" were so much faster than me that I never saw them at all the entire day. After the rest stop I was with a small group for a while, but then I decided to stop. Someone from our club had arranged in advance with a local business owner for us to use his place as an optional water stop if needed, and knowing the hills that we had to climb before reaching the end I knew I would want that extra water. However everyone that I was riding with chose to keep going, so I was alone after that, for the last 10 miles. Even with the extra water and frequent stops in the shade to take off my helmet and pour water over my head, arms and torso, I barely made it. I don't think I've ever been that badly affected by the heat -- I almost started to cry a couple of times. My stomach was bothering me so I probably didn't have enough to eat, which was making things worse. Fortunately the last few miles were flat.

    When I finally reached the end I went straight to my car, which I had parked next to a building where there was some shade from the sun. I had several blue ice packs in a cooler in the car, and I took them out and put them inside my jersey, front and back, and sat down. Took off my shoes and helmet and just sat there. Drank some orange juice that was also in the cooler. Thankfully there was a bit of a breeze. At first I was worried, I was breathing rapidly. But after a few minutes I felt better. I took one of the blue ice packs and held it against the back of my neck, then the top of my head, then either side of my face. Many of the other people in the club had already left, after doing a shorter ride or finishing the longer ride much faster than me. Most of the rest were inside the building. But eventually a few people noticed me and asked if I needed anything. One came over to talk to me, another came over with a tall spray bottle full of water and gave me a good soaking. I was surprised at how fast the water dried, even with the humidity. Eventually I felt better and started to feel hungry, so I went inside and got some food. I still looked like hell, though -- people kept asking if I was okay. On the way home I went back to the place where I'd gotten the water and bought some stuff, to thank them for letting us stop there.

    I thought I was the only person who was so affected by the heat, but later I found out that I wasn't alone. Several of the faster riders had cramps that continued after the ride ended. One person on the shorter ride stopped and called her husband to come get her. And one person at the picnic felt like she was going to faint, but didn't say anything to anyone until a man noticed her and asked if she was okay, then helped her move over to the doorway where there was a breeze and cooled her down with the hose.

    When we do these all-class rides, they tend to be chaotic. The "leaders" don't really lead anything. Each group starts separately, with someone else telling them to go, and no chance for the leaders to make any pre-ride announcements or even get a good look at who is in the group so they know who to look out for on the road. And we don't have the option of making changes or canceling the ride if the weather is bad enough to be a safety risk. I am planning to say something about this to the club decision-makers.

    On another note, this was my first ride with the new drive train. There were two big changes -- a 46T large chain ring instead of a 50T, and two larger cogs on the back (28 and 32) for easier climbing. Because of the heat I didn't want to push myself too hard, so I stayed in the small chain ring (34T) for most of the ride instead of using the new 46T large chain ring. For a few miles of flat road I did try out the new chain ring, and it was definitely much easier on my knee than the 50T ring and also easier to shift between large and small since there's not as much of a jump between them. I did use the new larger cogs on some of the hills, especially at the end when the heat was getting to me. For the most part the shifting was smooth but a few times it felt off. I will probably do 2-3 more test rides and then take the bike back for a derailleur adjustment. But overall I am already glad that I made the changes.
    Last edited by ny biker; 08-14-2016 at 08:55 AM.

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  2. #32
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    You are lucky you recovered, NY. I would have disliked that chaos, too! Fortunately, our club follows the rules for hiking trips, so if you go ahead of the leader, it's bye, bye. Some of the leaders hated this change when it was instituted for insurance liability, as it's different than a regular bike club, where people just go off on their own, it seems. But, we had only be leading a year when it started, so we didn't care. I give you credit for getting out there, in those conditions, which we are now having today. Yesterday it was cool here.
    The thing is, about the anger and riding fast, I would never ride fast or push myself if I didn't ride with DH. I can push myself for short intervals, at the most. On group rides, if I am with people at my level or a bit below/above me, I get an angry competitive spirit, but I always pay for it afterwards, in terms of recovery. It's a battle in my head. I'd like to be faster, but I am not so good with the suffering. Plus, I've been doing some kind of endurance exercise for 35 years, and DH was a slug until about 18 years ago. He played tennis and raquetball, but complained bitterly when I would even suggest taking a walk! After all of this time, I sometimes wish I could be a fat, unhealthy old lady like everyone else my age, but I just can't stop now...
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  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    I was pissed the whole ride, and I kept up, but I keep wondering why I get so angry when I have to ride fast.
    I am the same! I think, for me at least, it is just the whole "I want to do my ride MY way and not anyone else's way" thing. A control thing, I suppose. I want to be the master of my own universe, thank you very much.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
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  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    Thanks for the update on Dickinson, Emily. Yup, that's what I feared. One of my factors in choosing a place to live was a stable population and economy. In my research, I specifically eliminated areas that either had a lot of population growth or that were losing population. Dickinson would have been a mistake for me.

    Also, you did exactly what I would have done on those MTB trails. I can handle some of our local intermediate level trails, now, but only after riding and scouting them a bunch of times. Knowing the trail and what to expect is a BIG plus on being able to ride the trail. Just don't have enough of the daredevil in me to plunge into the unknown and probably a good thing, too, since I ride solo, so much.
    You are welcome (re. Dickinson update)! And thank you for the validation that you would have turned around too, in the circumstances we encountered. I hate feeling like a wimp, and I am generally pretty fearless when it comes to road rides, but singletrack is a different animal and brings out different responses in me. And of course, herds of cattle and dangerous roads do as well!

    That said, I did pretty well waiting out a couple of bison on our final road ride in TRNP!

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    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
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  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    The thing is, about the anger and riding fast, I would never ride fast or push myself if I didn't ride with DH. I can push myself for short intervals, at the most.
    Ditto ditto ditto! My DH is a gifted rider. I always tell him that if he'd really been into it as a young man, he could possibly have been a competitive racer. He's the polka-dot jersey guy, not a sprinter, but an amazing hill climber. He used to routinely beat guys 20-30 years younger up the climbs when we were in a club and did weekend club rides. At age 62, he hasn't slowed down much at all, and trying to stay with him, for me, is an exercise in frustration. So either I draft off him and he goes a bit slower than he'd like to, or, more often, he rides his pace and loops back to find me when he's gotten too far ahead.

    I guess it's frustrating for him as well since he'd love for me to be able to stay with him, but sometimes I think he's not as understanding as he could be. Men and women are different physiologically, and even barring that, we all have different abilities in various exercise realms.

    Like you, I just want to keep on riding my ride as long as I am physically able. And I don't want to beat myself up if I am slower than someone else (man or woman). Like you too, I am a bit more competitive than I should be, always have been, and that is part of the frustration. If I didn't care, it wouldn't matter, and I'd just not worry about it. Right?
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
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  6. #36
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    Right! My DH was encouraged to race when DS was racing, but he never wanted to do that. We ride together at a slightly moderated pace for him, but there are many times he is just as complaining as me. When we do long rides without others, we are not going fast. Part of it is he has been riding more than me recently. Not longer rides, but very short ones where he goes fast. I am glad we ride together, but I think I am just mad at myself for being lazy. I wish I had started riding in my 20s or 30s.
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  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    I am glad we ride together, but I think I am just mad at myself for being lazy. I wish I had started riding in my 20s or 30s.
    You, lazy?!?! Not a chance. You work out more than 99% of women your age. You are likely a perfectionist, as I am, so you get down on yourself and your efforts, but lazy, no way.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
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  8. #38
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    I'm at the other extreme with my DH. He's suffered from many health injuries, over the years, and has never been much into biking, anyway. Now that he's married to me, though, he bikes with me, everyday, on a short run in the neighborhood with our dogs. He's tried some of my single track, but it intimidates him, at this point. I'm okay with this because I love sharing anything with him and because he indulges my biking addiction. When it comes time for my serious biking, I'm strictly solo, though.

  9. #39
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    Yesterday we did a ride on the frontage road where we are staying in North Dakota (Forsyth, a small but cute town with lots of historic homes). It was a really nice road, lightly traveled (since it runs parallel to the interstate, but not close enough to hear road noise). Nice views of the Yellowstone River at times. Had planned on ~30 miles but ended up with 41 since it was easy going. Nice when that happens! The only downside was a bit of a tiff with DH at the beginning of the ride on exactly the subject discussed in this thread; him wanting to go faster than was comfortable for me. Finally he sped off (and cooled off), and we were able to ride together for most of the ride, though he went farther at the end. It is hard for him to "get" that I am just not as naturally fast as him. He insists he's "going easy" and doesn't know why I can't keep up without "going hard". Frustrating.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
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  10. #40
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    I feel your frustration, Emily. I have done road biking with boyfriends and have experienced the same thing as far as keeping pace, but at least they were patient. Really takes the fun out of riding when you are frantic to keep up, though. Oh, I have the endurance - I can go all day and then some - but the kind of average speed the guys wanted to run was a bit too much for me. Same thing with the mountain biking. They could make some of the nasty steep stuff with a big burst of speed and I, well, I had to walk over the tops. Oh, well.
    Last edited by north woods gal; 08-16-2016 at 10:50 AM.

  11. #41
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    DH and I are in Denver for our 30th anniversary. We brought the bikes and had a lovely 13 mile ride along Clear Creek Trail this morning. It has been ages since we've ridden together. Would have been longer but we had an appointment with Mom's financial advisor. All the stuff since Dad died... I think we should get 2 or 3 more rides in before we go back home. It has been so long since we've had a trip that hasn't involved a family health crisis or a funeral. It seems like paradise!
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  12. #42
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    I must be some of the lucky ones.

    Hubby is very patient knowing I will never be faster or stonger than him. When he wants speed, he goes with his club rides. When with me, it is to be together. I'm the one frustrating as I can't achieve what I'd like but it is what is is. He keeps telling me to go at my own pace and he's just happy to see me ride. He is a great coach to me when I need a little push or need to slow done or stop.

    When with me, if we are on a bike trail, he will go for a sprint and come back to me. We have the perfect ride to satisfy each one of us.
    Helene
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  13. #43
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    You are lucky, Helene! My DH is a wonderful guy, but he is not a very patient person AND, since we are traveling full-time now, he doesn't have a club of faster riders to ride with, so I am his only cycling companion. That is part of what makes this hard since he wants to be able to ride together as much as possible. I told him that the slower person has to be the one to determine the pace, and he gets that, but I think he still keeps hoping I will get faster. I used to be faster, but I was 12 years younger then and hadn't had my pelvic fracture that set me back quite a bit on the bike. When we used to do club rides, he'd ride with a faster group than me and then save his recovery rides for when we were riding alone together. Don't really have that now. He doesn't like to ride alone all that much, and I really don't either, since we are so often riding in new places and need to figure out the routes/roads together. It's different from riding roads we're both familiar with and don't have any questions about.

    Consider yourself very fortunate!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
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  14. #44
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    Emily, what about a tandem? We may have talked about this before--my brain is shrinking, I think :-P.

    I'll never be as fast as Chris, but I ride a lot on my own. And we have put 8-9,000 tandem miles since we started in 2005, in addition to riding our own singles regularly. We have a blast.

    And for all those who instantly say, "I could never..."--rent one and try it first.
    "My predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved;I have been given much and I have given something in return...Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and an adventure." O. Sacks

  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackhillsbiker View Post
    DH and I are in Denver for our 30th anniversary. We brought the bikes and had a lovely 13 mile ride along Clear Creek Trail this morning. It has been ages since we've ridden together. Would have been longer but we had an appointment with Mom's financial advisor. All the stuff since Dad died... I think we should get 2 or 3 more rides in before we go back home. It has been so long since we've had a trip that hasn't involved a family health crisis or a funeral. It seems like paradise!
    Lovely. I know the family health/funeral times very well--good for you guys for going for this ride! A little normal joy.
    "My predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved;I have been given much and I have given something in return...Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and an adventure." O. Sacks

 

 

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