Riding Flat

Today is a long travel day, so what better way to start it than with a 5:00 a.m. wake up for a 20 mile ride? Depending on how I feel when I eventually make it to my hotel at around 11 p.m., I may get a light strength and stretching routine in, but the ride will be my only full workout for the day. Knowing that, you might think I’d choose to go hard or go home. You would be wrong. The last two days have been pretty heavy training, with at least two workouts (including one ride) each day. Both rides were over hilly routes, so I decided to change up the scenery and pick one of my flatter courses this morning.

The first third of the route is on the road, and it was predictably quiet at that hour. The middle third switched over to a shared use bike and running/walking path, and I was surprised at how busy the path was. Not exactly a traffic jam, but a steady stream of people even at 6:00. It’s really encouraging to see that many people willing to give up a few minutes of sleep for the longer term health benefit.

I felt the benefit of the flatter route when I got to the final killer hill that leads into my neighborhood. I felt like I had more left this morning than in the previous two climbs over the weekend. That climb is always a tough one because it is short but very steep. I haven’t done that climb for over a month, and now I’ve done it three days in a row. I’d like to say I miss doing it regularly, but my mother told me never to lie…

This is probably the last real ride I’ll get until next week. If I’m lucky, one of the multitude of hotels I’m in will have at least a stationary bike, which is better than nothing. I’ll focus most of my efforts on running, with as much swimming as I can do in hotel pools. That’s the good thing about swimming in the pool… It’s always flat.

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3 Responses to Riding Flat

  1. elisariva says:

    I thought the same thing today! At least the pool is flat…

  2. Jean says:

    Hope you do well in triathalon. I don’t jog nor swim. But I have been cycling alot for ..past 2 decades. I would recommend that even doing a shorter route with some challenging hills will make you stronger than you realize over time from a cycling perspective compared to a slightly longer but flat route.

    I notice the difference in my hill climbing ability when I lived in Vancouver BC where there were more hills to cycle nearly daily compared to Toronto where I was before.

    • Chasing Fifty says:

      Thanks very much. Riding hills will definitely make you stronger. Unfortunately, I spend most of my time in Tampa, Florida, which is even flatter than Toronto (I lived in Toronto for a year). I usually ride hills when I make it back to Arkansas, though.

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