Thursday, January 18, 2007

On time at last!

Last night marked the first time I was actually early for one of Robert's WRCS rides. So nice to start off relaxed and not rushed!! Who knew?!?!

Great night of riding. It was cold, but dry and clear. I had purchased some toe covers and chemical toe warmers from Cycletherapy and was anxious to see if they'd help stave off the cold. I also picked up some Sport Beans. I've heard good things about these, and have tasted them and found them to be quite tasty, so what the hell?

Our route this night took us predominantly west from Royal Oak to Beverly Hills and Franklin, then up to Bloomfield and Birmingham, and finally back to Royal Oak. Ride time was about 2 hours, and I would guess we covered about 25 miles at a pretty easy pace around 13-14 mph. The road were pretty clear, though there was one biker versus ground incident precipitated by a large patch of ice in the gutter as we exited a park. The key is not trying to turn on the big patch of ice. (And, no, it wasn't me.. :P )

I pretty much dressed perfectly for the ~20 degree wind chill adjusted temps. On top: Old rowing tank (lycra/spandex), REI long sleeved light base layer, Long sleeved jersey, Fleece vest, Lightweight biking jacket, and Lobster mitts. On bottom: Biking shorts, Sport Hill thermal tights, wool socks, toe warmers, shoes with PI toe covers. Took a little bit to warm up the toes and fingers, but once I did they were good until about 1:45:00 into the ride. By then, though, I could feel the other effects of running low on fuel (slight grogginess, hunger, weak feeling...). It's amazing that it's taken me this long to realize that my fingers and toes get cold later in a ride not because my gloves and shoes suddenly stopped working, but rather b/c my body has reduced the flow of warmth-carrying blood to those regions b/c it must conserve what energy is left to keep the core warm. I can combat this by continuing to stoke the fires by adding calories while I ride. I'm already bad at doing this in the summer, but in the winter I'll need to add even more to keep enough in the system that the body can keep the fires burning! Next step, find out how many calories I'll need... Not challenging, perhaps, for your normal person. But I've never been accused of being normal.

Got home and ate late, which I believe led to a fitful sleep. Yet, I'm feeling pretty good today. Gotta add some running and stairs into the mix soon if I'm going to climb Detroit!



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