Wednesday, July 26, 2006

July 2006 Bike Odyssey--Virtual Race to Traverse City, MI--Day 2--26 miles. (total: 52)

Day 2 started again at 5 am. After having gotten up twice in the night to hit the Alleve, my back was feeling quite a bit better, enough so that I wasn't concerned it would become a big problem later in the journey. I decided to do some icing while drinking my coffee and sitting at the computer for a while. Checking the weather though it was obvious it might rain at some point that day, but the prediction was for 8 am or later. Um, yeah, that's probably why its raining right now?? Well, I'll get ready anyway and Plan B can be to do a run, Plan C a swim. I'm not opposed to riding in the rain, but it concerned me some because it was SO dark yet and already 6:15. I packed the car (as if going on a week's vacation!) in the rain, but still decided I would take a wait-and-see approach on what to do. The rooster down the street (yes, I live in the city) was crowing about now. Sorry buddy, but I beat you to it today.

As I drove to the park, the rain was letting up. It was still street light dark, but hopefully by the time I got the bike out and ready it would be light enough to head out. By the time I arrived at the park, the rain was letting up to just a fine mist and it was getting lighter by the minute. It was going to be a late start though, so I was going to have to do some figuring on how far I could get in and still be reasonably on time for work. I decided to wear my white zip up that day to be visible, both on the road and the path. It was too warm for a jacket and it was red, so not as visible.

I headed down the path again, flat and fast. My legs felt surprisingly good, but I realized early on that I desparately needed to clean my chain because of all the sand from the tri and the sand on the path on Monday. Now it was wet sand, and I could hear it grinding when I changed gears. There was more broken twigs and debris on the road again today, but I was clipping along quite fast and basically just road over the stuff. Same amount of people out, probably anywhere from 6-10. Same old man, same trash pickers, same commuters. It was getting to be a recognition factor as we passed each other.

I knew I would have to cut it short so only planned on 45 min. or around 12-13 miles. I was guessing 12.5, since of course the computer was off. I had finally figured out a way to keep track of distance, based on the fact that it was 6 mph off. So for every 30 min., I deducted 3 miles from my total; every 15, 1.5. That came out pretty true to distance, so I went with that.

Then 4 miles from finishing, the deluge started. It poured hard enough that I had a hard time seeing for a couple of minutes. It wasn't that bad getting wet, but was glad I had the zip up on. Then my shoes started filling with water. Squish, squish. Other than that, not too bad. The last part of the trail was flooded this time, being a low area and one that washes out also, so I just kept the steering steady and didn't break and coasted through the puddle. Then it was hustle to the gym to get changed. I looked like a drenched rat. My socks were filthy and gray from the road spray and my shorts were actually squishing in the car when I sat. I had remembered to bring a towel, which helped keep the seats clean, but here I was with a whole load of wet clothes!

The second ride of the day came after work. I knew I would have to do at least another 12.5 miles, but once I got going, it wasn't so bad. I wasn't hungry and as tired as the day before, so I wasn't crabby either! Everything was okay, and my legs felt good. I was flying along actually and ended up doing 14.5. I had to make myself stop, because I really did not want to overdo it and end up like I did on Monday.

Everyone is asking me what my distance is, but I'm pretty much keeping quiet. I really am not that worried anyone else will beat me, but I also want to be sure. Keep them guessing!

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