A Ride Around the Gettysburg Battlefield

Back in the good ole days, I’d run in the Firecracker 5K on Independence Day morning with my running friends. But since 2020 I’ve traded in my red, white, and blue running outfit for a patriotic jersey and joined my husband and Dawn Patrol friends for a covered bridges and Gettysburg bike tour.

With high heat and humidity in the forecast, we scheduled our ride for 7 AM and left our house around 5:50 for the hour drive to Thurmont, MD. Only one other friend was able to join us this year, but we still had a great time with our small peloton of three.

It was cool and comfortable as we rolled out of the parking lot, but a couple of hours into the ride the sun broke out and the temperature rose quickly. We all felt pretty good until the last five miles or so when were all ready to be done. Waiting in our car was ice cold chocolate milk which was exactly what we needed to tie us over until we stopped for lunch on the way home.

Later in the afternoon, we attended our neighborhood’s block party which was fajita themed this year – yes, please! I’d told my friends in advance that my water bottle would be filled with a margarita, but I was so dehydrated from the ride that I stuck with water. I made a flag cake for the festivities, something I’d wanted to make for years.

We had a fabulous time catching up with our neighbors, but were so exhausted that we walked home before the fireworks display.


Overview of the Week

Before getting into each day’s workouts, here’s an overview of my workouts from this past week. Scroll beyond the infographic for daily details…



Cycling: 23.05 miles
• Average speed: 11.2 MPH
• Bike: Salsa Warbird
• Surface: gravel
• Elevation gain: 1,873 feet
• Start time: 9:11 AM
• Location: Middleburg loop
• Weather: 81° (feels like 87°) with high humidity and mostly cloudy, climbing to 89° (feels like 98°) and partly cloudy
• What I wore: bike shorts, s/s jersey, and fingerless gloves

With the temperature and humidity on the rise, the Gravel Rats scheduled the ride earlier than usual at 9 AM rather than 10:30. My husband and I would have preferred to ride earlier, but we really like this group of friends so we tolerated the heat and joined them. Post ride we enjoyed a group lunch at Lost Barrel Brewery.



Strength training: 1 hour of full body

Walking: 3.13 miles
• Average pace: 16:18 minute/mile
• Elevation gain: 185 feet
• Start time: 4:56 PM
• Location: neighborhood trails
• Weather: 78° and sunny with low humidity
• What I wore: shorts, s/s shirt, and visor



Cycling: 32.61 miles
• Average speed: 12.5 MPH
• Bike: Specialized Roubaix Comp
• Surface: paved
• Elevation gain: 1,608 feet
• Start time: 8:09 AM
• Location: W&OD Trail Ashburn/Leesburg loop with Thomas Mill and Woodburn climbs
• Weather: 69° and sunny with low humidity, climbing to 80° and mostly sunny
• What I wore: bike shorts, s/s jersey, and fingerless gloves

I did my last ride with significant climbing before GRUSK, my second ever bike race, which will be this coming Saturday. The weather was delightful!



Strength training: 1 hour of full body

Walking: 2.21 miles
• Average pace: 16:47 minute/mile
• Elevation gain: 83 feet
• Start time: 3:58 PM
• Location: neighborhood trails
• Weather: 87° (feels like 93°) and partly sunny, turning mostly cloudy
• What I wore: shorts, tank, and visor



Cycling: 53.13 miles
• Average speed: 13.4 MPH
• Bike: Specialized Roubaix Comp
• Surface: paved
• Elevation gain: 2,684 feet
• Start time: 7:09 AM
• Location: Thurmont, MD to Gettysburg, PA loop
• Weather: 71° and partly cloudy, climbing to 87° (feels like 95°)
• What I wore: bike shorts, s/s jersey, and fingerless gloves

As I mentioned in the opening paragraphs, we drove to Maryland for our annual Independence Day bike tour. Our tour took us into Pennsylvania and around the Gettysburg battlefield as well as through three red covered bridges and across two beautiful truss bridges.



Strength training: 1 hour full body

Balance and stretching: 45 minutes



Cycling: 12 miles
• Average speed: 16.8 MPH
• Bike: Life Fitness Lifecycle GX Spin
• Surface: N/A
• Elevation gain: N/A
• Start time: 9:21 AM
• Location: basement
• Weather: 66° in basement, 90° (feels like 100°) and sunny outside
• What I wore: bike shorts and sports bra

Walking: 2.51 miles
• Average pace: 14:51 minute/mile
• Elevation gain: N/A
• Start time: 10:29 AM
• Location: basement
• Weather: 67° in basement, 93° (feels like 103°) and sunny outside
• What I wore: bike shorts and sports bra

Because I needed to leave the house by 12:30 PM to get to the gym to teach a fitness orientation class, I didn’t have time to join my husband and friends for a gravel ride in western Loudoun and get home in time to shower and leave for class. After doing some early morning chores I jumped on my trusty spin bike and treadmill for my cardio workout, thankful I had an indoor option on such a hot morning.


Last Week’s Blog Posts

In case you skipped checking in on my blog this past week, here’s what you missed…


  • • If you live in the USA, did you do anything special to celebrate Independence Day? ~ After our ride, we attended our neighborhood’s block party.
  • • Has it been hot where you live? ~ After a delightful start to the week with cooler temps and low humidity, Friday’s temperature reached 101° (feels like 115°).
  • • Did you run in race this weekend? ~ no


And that’s my rundown… Have a great week!




I’m linking up with Deborah at Confessions of a Mother Runner and Kim from Running on the Fly for their Weekly Run Down. Be sure to check out not only the hosts’ posts, but those of the other great bloggers joining in on the fun!


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