This past weekend was nice–stayed in town and relaxed with numerous grill-outs. I got in another bike ride on Saturday with some hills, so I was happy about that. I might try to do one more before the du.
I left from my house, and planned on winging a route out into the country. I took Davis and just kept going...and eventually found my way to the bike trail! I had no idea I could get to the trail that way. There is still a very nasty big hill to climb up, but hey, that's what training is for.
I wound my way down this hill–it took a sharp left at the beginning and then just kept going. I was going 40 mph, a little above the 35 mph speed limit of the road :) Then, I was on a slightly rolling, curvy part of the road along the river–the opposite side from the trail. Soon I came to Old 3C, which surprised me. I popped out here, crossed the river and got on the trail by the Monkey Bar. Yay for a new and much better route to the trail other than the only other one I knew about which was Old 3C–a very bumpy, shoulderless road that I never had any intention of riding down.
Since my original intention had been to ride roads, I decided I would take the part of the trail that goes to Lebanon. As I remembered it was kind of hilly, or at least not as flat as the main trail. When I got near Lebanon, I climbed the longest hill ever. I remember doing this part of the trail a few years back after it was new and had just opened...Greg and I were on our mountain bikes and I don't think I made it all the way to the top before having to hop off. Unfortunately, the start of the hill is after a stop sign, so there wasn't any momentum to help in the beginning...I just had to start going. I shifted down into my lowest gear and kept a constant rhythm on the pedals that matched my heavy breathing. It was so hard. I was completely maxed out–couldn't have gone any faster or my lungs would have exploded. I reached the top and slowly kept pedaling, gradually gaining some speed again as I recovered. I moved to the road that ran parallel to the trail. After some more rollers and the road ending into 48, I turned around and headed back.
That hill took a lot out of me. But I still managed 17 - 19 mph on my way back. When I got back to Davis, however, I bailed on the hill. One very tough hill was enough for this day, a week before the du. I wanted to save my knee. And I also didn't feel like falling over in the road when I wouldn't have enough energy to reach the top...which I was 99% certain would happen :) So I walked it, and even that had me huffing and puffing loudly.
At the top of that hill I got back on my bike and rode slowly as I recovered again. I was looking forward to getting home and drinking something other than water. Something with flavor.
I made it back and collapsed on the floor, but not before pouring myself a tall glass of sweet tea. It tasted wonderful.
So now it's 5 more days until the du. I'm hoping I can conquer the hills around Caesar's Creek pretty well this year. There will be a lot of gear shifting going on.