This week, I’ve started in earnest on getting in shape for the Seagull Century bike ride in October. My brother-in-law Chris asked me to do it last year and I agreed, but now it’s July and between the wedding and covid, I’m behind schedule. So it’s time to get it in gear.
Today was the first of my long ride days (35-mile target) and it was also hot as hell. On Thursday, I got in a 21-mile ride. It was my first longer ride with my new shoes and SPD pedals, and I was able to pull on the backside of my cycle stroke. That was a good thing, but it also meant that when I went faster, I was using muscles that haven’t really gotten a lot of use in recent years. So I ended up cramping in my left calf and limping home.
Today I kept things very free-wheeling and easy. I didn’t push on the way down to Manayunk, just spun circles and worked on pulling through the back half of the pedal stroke and changing up my hand positions to avoid fatigue. When I was passed, I didn’t chase.
It worked pretty well. I got down there feeling pretty good, took some photos and headed back. Ride back I started to tire, but that’s why you do it. The good news: I avoided re-cramping my left calf, even though I kept my left foot hooked into the pedal the whole time. That is probably the headline of the day. Finished up with an average speed around 13.3 mph. I’ll take that, especially given it was hotter than hell and I didn’t do a great job of applying sunscreen before I left.
Attached are some photos from the ride.