Sunday, March 29, 2009

Best Ride Ever

For real this time.

I know I said I had the best ride ever a few rides ago, but I guess I lied. Again, I'm new, so I didn't really have a good basis for what the best ride ever would be. Now I do and I'm sure it won't ever change certainly won't change tomorrow. We'll see. Anyway, on to the ride.

Friday night I talked to my older brother Chad, and we
decided to meet up on Saturday for a ride. He had yet to see my new bike, and the weather was going to be great so it was on. I called out new partner in crime, Todd and he said he was in as well. He's a champ. He just decided to do the century on Wednesday, he got in 8 miles outside on Thursday, 11 on Friday and he we are trying to con him into a 20 miler on Saturday. Oh, did I mention he's a tad sleep deprived having just come home with a new baby five or so weeks ago. That may be why he decided to join us, either way, he was in, so we headed down to the Mystic, CT area around 10:30 am for the ride.

Chad lives, works, and rides down there so he was our tour guide for the day. When we arrived, he had a nice surprise for me... a pair of bike shorts to borrow for the ride. If you've been following along, you know that up until this point I've been rocking wind pants or my lacrosse shorts from high school as my biking gear. As this was going to be my first legit ride, I guess it was only right that I don some legit gear.

The shorts went on OK, and actually weren't as tight or uhhh, restrictive as I anticipated, however, when I went to walk I noticed an interesting phenomenon. What I call, the diaper effect. Now, I admit, it's been awhile since I wore a diaper, and my memories of them are a bit vague, but it all came back to me when I pulled on these chamois bike shorts. Chad assured me that while yes, they are totally awkward and uncomfortable on land, once you hop on the bike, they are remarkably comfortable and keep things much more padded and protected along the ride. Nothing commits you to cycling like bike shorts. I felt like once I put them on, there was no turning back. So now that we were going for a ride no matter what, we better put some air in the tires.

I finally got to experience the joy of a floor pump. I never thought it would be so easy to get those things up to 100 psi. I loved it so much, I bought one today, very excited about that. Also, I ordered clipless shoes, so keep an eye out for the first clipless ride post coming soon. With everything set, we headed out.
Todd pulling ahead...Pretty good camera work by Chad here. He's taking pictures of me and Todd with his camera phone, while riding.

Now this is the first time that I've ridden with other cyclists, so taking off in a little pack was cool. We tooled through downtown Mystic and then headed up River Road. We were just rolling at this point, warming up and talking a bit. Much better, and more enjoyable than just pushing off by yourself. After a bit, Chad took the lead and started guiding Todd and I through Ledyard and Stonington. Did I mention it was beautiful out. Nice and sunny, about high fifties or low sixties, a perfect day for shorts and fingerless gloves, although I did wear a long sleeve shirt.

For the most part, we weren't really pushing it today but it was a great time. Twice we put the pedal to the medal. I don't yet have my bike computer set up, but Chad's said the we reached just over 30 mph, and this wasn't a downhill mind you. I actually had to start cranking hard to get up to that speed, which I loved by the way. I could really get used to this whole speed thing. It takes a bit out of you, but man is it fun.

Now, I'm sure you're wondering, how long. How long is this perfect ride? Keep in mind that up to this point, the furthest I've gone is 13 miles so I would have been excited about making it to 14. But no, not good enough for this ride. This non cycling novice and his cancer fighting compadres, made it a whopping...

18.4 miles.

OK, OK, still a long way to 100 but we're getting there. That, plus the fact that the route we just did is my brother's "lunch ride" keep me in my place. Still wouldn't consider myself a cyclist, but hey, at least now I own a bike.

We made it back to my brother's house intact and loving life. We wound down with some brats and beers on his deck wondering why we couldn't do this everyday.

1 comment:

  1. That sounds like an awesome ride. It's always good to ride with friends. I still wear a pair of shorts over my bike shorts because I feel like a dork. For centuries I only wear the bike shorts though.


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