First off, I really should apologize to any of my readers who saw my Instagram posts last week bragging about how cool our early mornings were and how delightful it felt to run in 60° weather and lower humidity. Late June in the mid-Atlantic region is usually quite hot and miserably humid so any improvement on that is news worthy. I really could feel a pep in my step and was somewhat encouraged about how training for my fall races might go assuming I can stay healthy.
“What goes around comes around,” as they say, and our heat and humidity are back. Expect my usual whining and complaining going forward until late September’s cooler crisp weather!
My plans for a Saturday morning run got pushed aside after my friends Lupe and Angela asked if I wanted to join them for a 25-mile bike ride. Since I haven’t been able to run with them since my injury in mid-February, I jumped at the chance. I asked my friends if my cute side-kick could also join us and they readily agreed.
It turns out that Bill was very handy to have around as he helped Lupe make some adjustments on her bike right after we got started. Not only does he carry fuel and our GoPro in those big biking shorts pockets, but he also had a couple of necessary bike tools on him.
As we passed runners, we were very careful to practice all the things we wish bikers would do when we’re running. For example, when a pack of bikers pass on the left, I’d love for them to let us know how many are in their little peloton, so we did just that, saying, “Passing on your left and there’s four of us.” Also if other people were coming toward us as we approached runners or walkers from behind, we slowed down instead of crowding them off the trail as we passed. When one particular group of runners thanked us as we passed, we shouted, “We’re nice bikers because we’re runners!”
A little farther into our ride and as I struggled to keep up with the pack, Bill pulled into this little park with a world sculpture in Leesburg for a photo. While stopped, I suggested that I might need to turn around soon and head home so I wouldn’t slow the rest of them down. Water and some Honey Stingers (affiliate link) seemed to perk me up and as we pulled away, I fell in line behind Bill.
Once back on the trail, Bill started describing the proper biking cadence with me, and I quickly realized that I was doing the whole gear thing wrong. I thought that I should have my bike in the highest gear anytime I was on flat terrain. In reality, I should be trying to maintain a consistent cadence of around 85 to 90 RPM’s, and adjusting my gears so that I could most easily keep that cadence. In actuality, I probably wasn’t pedaling quite that fast, but I understood the concept and once I started changing my gears accordingly, riding was so much easier!
With that one simple little bit of knowledge and adjustment to how I was riding, I was able to keep up with the pack and had no problem going the distance.
Near the end of our ride, I started messing with the front derailleur on my bike and realized that, low and behold, I have twenty-one gears, not fourteen like I thought. Who the heck doesn’t know how many gears their bike has after riding it several times? It’s definitely going to take a bit more practice for me to get this whole cadence and gear changing thing down, but when I do, look out! HaHa!
Once we got back to the parking lot where we dropped Lupe and Angela off at their cars, Bill headed out for another ten miles while I looped out a mile and back and then headed home.
By the time I got home I had added just enough miles to make my total ride 26.2 miles. If I can no longer run a marathon, I might as well ride one!
I have a feeling this biking with friends thing just might become a regular thing. Next up, a Cruisers ride!
Looking ahead to this week, if time allows on Tuesday afternoon, I’ll write my race recap for that morning’s Firecracker 5K. If not, I’ll post it later in the week. Also, please be sure to join me on Wednesday for my monthly Wednesday Word linkup where this month’s word is development.
In addition to running and biking, here’s a more detailed look at what other workouts I completed this past week…
Fitness tools beyond the equipment in my gym that I used during the week included:
- Rodney Yee’s Complete Yoga For Beginners (affiliate link)
- Rodney Yee’s Intermediate Yoga (affiliate link)
- Rodney Yee’s Yoga Conditioning For Athletes (affiliate link)
- Tony Horton’s Ten Minute Trainer (affiliate link)
- Teeter Hang Ups Inversion (affiliate link)
Cameras used for blog photography include:
- GoPro Hero 4 (affiliate link)
- Canon Power Shot Elph (affiliate link)
- iPhone 6S (affiliate link)
- And the occasional picture taken by Bill
- How do you like to cross train?
- What are your Independence Day plans? ~ I’m running in my fifth consecutive Firecracker 5K on Tuesday morning!
- Did you race this weekend?
Have a great week!
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links which means if you click on the blue product link and then make a purchase, I will receive a commission for referring you. You will pay no more or less for the product; however, Amazon will show their gratitude for my referral by paying me.