Monday, May 14, 2012

strength in numbers

Friday after work I had to run out to eastern CT to pick up a new household tool. Then back to Hartford in time for the viewing of the latest freeride film "Strength in Numbers". A local bike shop, Cutting Edge, hosted the movie viewing. A spur of the moment thing and despite getting home late without dinner and having to wake up early for a long bike ride the movie was awesome. Glad we went.

Check out the trailer here:
I had trouble sleeping Friday night. Not sure why. Somewhere through our bike ride Saturday it would later become an issue.

So, taking a page out of T-hom's book, I slept 5-6hrs Friday night and was up at 6am to get ready for my bike ride with Charlie, James, Neal and Aaron.

On the bike at 7:30am to meet them up the street from me. The plan was to ride north into Pennwood State Forest and follow the Metacomet trail to the Massachusetts border. Then ride west to a little coffee place (that was really good) and then head south. I was expecting to be on the bike for the majority of the day.
Photo: charlie
The temperature was climbing into the lower 80s and I was not paying attention to eating or drinking. First hot day riding this year and that typically equates to me having trouble eating and drinking. I do not quite understand my issue with this. Perhaps I am used to not drinking a lot in the colder temps that the day it gets warm I forget? I don't know. All I do know is that 4hours into the ride I didn't finish the 3 bottles I was carrying and the majority of the ride I was working quite a bit. I also only ate a Clif Bar, one Gel and one Honey Stinger Waffle.
As a result, I was fading by the time we got up to Mass. To combat this I had a Coke and a veggie wrap at our stop. I figured this would help me and it eventually did but not as much as I wanted.

The paved rail trail south to Granby CT was a nice ease back into the ride home. It wasn't until the climb up to the Metacomet Ridge from Tariffville that I started fading very quickly. I couldn't quite recover from the climb so every little up or technical section from there on in destroyed me. I still managed to ride just about all of it but my pace was slower than a) I would have liked and b) everyone in the group.

My saving grace was time. As a group, we were getting itchy to get back as we were out for more than half the day. This meant the quicker more direct (and easier) route back home. Time also allowed my stomach to digest the coke and veggie wrap so I didn't have a knot anymore. This allowed me to be more comfortable pedaling.

In the end I made it home and had fun. Those two aspects are what matters the most. The outcome of me not eating and drinking properly on the ride is that my body was toast upon concluding the ride. I was also feeling the effects on Sunday whilst doing landscaping work at Ginger's parent's house.
On the bright side, the awesome thing about Saturday's ride is that we did a ride that I've been wanting to do for a few years now. Ride the Metacomet up to Mass and back. The catch on Saturday was the ride back was abbreviated relative to what I've been wanting to do. To that I give a big thank you to Charlie for taking the initiative of piecing this together.

Someday we'll do what I want to do: Get a group of fun people together to ride from the West Hartford Reservoir north along the rocky and technical Metacomet up to Mass. Then turn around and ride the same trail back. All trail. All hard shit. I can have vehicles placed at parking lots along the way for food and water in the sections where water is inaccessible. We will do this sometime.


Blogger CB2 said...

Your idea would skip the +20 mph road section to RRHBs. With singlespeeds that would be nice. I rode a 1x8 when we did this ride in March and it was much easier.

5/14/2012 8:31 AM  

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