Friday, June 29, 2007

Sakatah from Elysian

June 29, 2007

Distance = 22.72
Time = 1.39.04
Max speed = 23 mph
Average speed = 13.7 mph

Lorrie and I met Daryl and Tim in Elysian to do a ride along the Sakatah together. Daryl and Tim are also doing the MS TRAM so we figured it might good to bike together one day before the official ride. I already knew they would be much faster than us. But it was fun to ride with them anyway. They led us through Waterville past Camp Dells, which I realized was a place my family had camped when I was younger. I always wondered why Wisconsin Dells seemed so close when I was a kid! lol Easy! 'Cause that's not where we'd gone!! Mystery solved! Anyway, we started out at a good pace. Tim had ridden from Mankato so he was all warmed up. Not that that was why, but they were well ahead of us in no time. Still a beautiful ride. Lorrie had a bit of a fit about shifting gears on hills. It was cute. She figured it all out later. We rode about 14 miles or so on the trail and then road. Then we came to a point where we could continue on the trail or go back. Lorrie decided to head back toward the cars on the trail and the rest of us decided to go on a little bit further. So we did. It was good riding with them at about 19-20 mph. They, of course, were chatting and laughing. I was huffing and puffing! lol I'd not ridden that fast consistently this season so it was a challenge. We turned around about 5 miles out. Tim went ahead since he had to get back to Mankato so it was just Daryl and me. About 3 miles in, we were pulling into Waterville. Daryl was telling me a story and I suddenly felt like I was going to vomit or "the other." We found an outhouse by the high school and I was pretty violently sick. He said that was the first time he'd made anyone *that* sick with his talking. I wasn't sure I could keep riding so I just sat on the curb for a little bit. We decided that he should go on and let Lorrie know so that if I needed a ride, she could come back and get me. So he left and I sat. Then I got on my bike and rode about 20 feet before realizing I just couldn't do it. Such a strange feeling! So I called Lorrie and she had just gotten to my car. She came back and got me and we met Daryl for lunch at Tucker's in Elysian. lol I ate a little bit just to see how it went. Seemed fine. Just a little weak. About an hour later, I felt perfectly fine. The only thing I could guess was that I had pushed too hard to keep up with the boys AND it was the worst day of my period. (Hey, it's *my* blog!). I was a little embarrassed that it happened with those guys. I admit I was trying to impress them a little with being able to keep up. Guess I got put in my place eh? lol Anyway, it was still a good ride. Like I've said before... a bad day cycling is better than a good day doing pretty much anything else. (= Maybe next time I'll be able to keep down my breakfast.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Cannon City Loop

June 26, 2007

Distance = 29.05
Time = 2.22.17
Max speed = 33.0 mph
Avg speed = 12.2

HOT! HOT! HOT! Remember that short route I did a couple months ago that I "just knew" had a good ride in it? Well turns out it's a regular ride for the cycling group in town. So I figured it was time to just do it. As I sometimes do, I started a little later than intended. It was about noon. And it was about 100 degrees. Call me crazy, but I kindof like that. Not while I'm in it necessarily. But it keeps me drinking water and somehow keeps me from cramping. So I went out from Northfield on Division, turned a slight right onto 20, then onto 22. All with a headwind. That, along with the heat, did make it pretty difficult. It was also during this ride that I remembered I am more interested in longer distances and find myself discouraged in the first 15-20 miles of many rides. Strange. And then I find my rhythm. I just needed to remember. There was also a lot of climbing on this particular route... with a head wind. All of these factors made the whole thing a little difficult. I just had to keep telling myself that I love this crap! lol Once I turned off 22 onto the road into Nerstrand Blvd, I thought maybe it would settle down a bit. But no. Not as many hills but the head wind was still there. But *then* I turned toward the town of Nerstrand, can't remember the road, and the tailwind was incredible! I hit 29 mph at one point and I was basically coasting. That was a nice break! I turned for a short detour to get some water and peanut butter crackers in Nerstand. I sat outside the gas station for a few minutes. I talked to a man with a prosthetic leg that had photos decopaged (sp) into it who was also from Northfield. He was taking a Saturday cruise on his motorcycle, just checking out the small towns in the area and seeing where the roads would take him. Cool! Then I talked to an older gentleman who warned me that it was just too hot to be outside exercising at this time. He was very sweet! I actually liked Nerstrand. It would be interesting to go check out prices of houses for sale there. I digress. Back on the road. As I was riding again down the highway, a man pulled up next to me in his car and slowed down. Of course I got a little nervous and was ready to use my bike as a weapon if necessary. But he said he was lost and needed directions. I've lived in urban areas, maybe that doesn't matter, so I stayed far enough away from him that he wouldn't be able to touch me. Paranoid eh? Safe though! Anyway, I tried to help him enough that he wouldn't realize that I actually had no idea where I was. But he was trying to get to Mankato and I knew he was going the wrong direction for that. So I gave him directions to Northfield and told him that was the only place I knew how to start from. He seemed thankful and took off. Strange to be stopped on a highway like that. Back to riding. Got to the next stop sign and, according to my map, had a choice I could make. It seemed like one had fewer hills so I took that one. In retrospect, I don't think either way would have been better in that regard. The way I chose just gave me a straighter route back to my house. But there were helacious hills there! One had been labeled by the Nfld Cycling Club as a King of the Mtn climb. Holy crap! I talked to my legs and asked them to keep going. I called them a few names to get them angry too. That seemed to work a little. But the girls respond best to niceties. (= I made it back to 426 or 406 or whatever Division becomes and headed back home. In the end, it was a great ride and just what I needed to get into TRAM training mode. Later in the evening I drove Lorrie on the route and she was impressed with the hills.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Sakatah Trail

June 25, 2007

Distance = 24.38
Time = 2.13.53
Max speed = 18.1 mph
Avg speed = 10.8 mph

Lorrie and I decided to go for a ride after work. Lorrie needed some down time and I needed to get some things ready. So we didn't actually get on the trail until maybe 6pm. Not too bad since it gets dark pretty late. We left from the Dairy Queen parking lot. Nothing out of the ordinary happened. That trail is just too bumpy for cycling. Maybe for a hybrid with shocks it would be good. But my hands felt nearly every bump. I don't know why I keep going back there except that it's convenient. We tried to predict when the sun would go down enough that we wouldn't be able to see at all. There's also a lot of tree coverage on this trail so it seems much darker at times than it really is. When we got to about 10 miles, we decided we could get in an extra 2 that direction so that Lorrie could ride further than she ever had. I'm glad we did that but it did actually get pretty dark. This time I had brought one of my pairs of sunglasses with the orange lenses so that I could see a little more clearly a little longer. That was a good thing because the bugs were horendous! Lorrie tucked in behind me and just watched my red jersey, which was about the only thing she could see. We finished without incident but decided that leaving directly after work would be a better idea. We can lounge afterwards! (= Dinner was A&W! lol

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Thunder Bay Loop

June 20, 2007

Distance = 21.62 miles
Time = 2.03.15
Max speed = 23.0 mph
Avg speed = 10.5 mph

Lorrie and I set out to do a 30 mile ride that was recommended by Lorrie's best friend Karen. So off we went. It was a little windy and a little hilly. After the first big hill Lorrie was struggling. But she kept going and got through that. We fought the wind most of the way but there was a section that was closed to vehicles because it was a new road. So it was great smooth tar! Very nice! We took a little detour around the college Lorrie went to and did some sightseeing. When we finished and it was just over 20 miles, we realized that Karen had been speaking Canadian... kilometers! Ha! Oh well. I think that ride was a little harder on Lorrie's ass than her previous ride. lol I thought we did pretty well though. I can't remember the route at the moment but I'll do an addendum if I figure it out.

Thursday, June 07, 2007


June 7, 2007

Distance = 30.25
Time = 2.09.28
Max speed = 19.5 mph
Avg speed = 14.0 mph

I wanted to try and hit the 30 mile mark and figured Sakatah was as safe a place as any to do so. Lorrie didn't want to ride so she and Emma took a long walk and played in the water. We parked at Cannon Lake so they'd be right on the beach when they had to wait for me. The trail was quite bumpy and my wrists took a pretty good beating! It was a good ride but I pushed the daylight a little too far. I just wanted to hit 30 badly so I pushed it to the 15 mile mark before heading back. One thing is that on a flat surface alone I might not have hit 19.5 mph. But since it was getting dark and I'm not fond of darkness in the woods, it made me go a little faster. There were many points where I was basically blindly riding and hoping that I wouldn't hit a branch or anything. I did eat a great many bugs! That was gross. But if that's the worst that happened, I'm pretty happy about it. Lorrie was waiting with a very wet and happy Emma Blue who had been playing in the water with her frisbee. We walked a little and then headed to A&W for dinner.


Dundas, in a roundabout sort of way (with Lorrie)

June 7, 2007

Distance = 8.36
Time = 53.54
Max speed = 35.0 mph
Avg speed = 9.2

I finally got Lorrie out for her first bike ride! She got her bike from her friend a few days ago and we haven't had much time to ride. We headed out on Division away from town like I had done a few weeks ago. Then I remembered some of the hills I had climbed, even on my short ride, and suggested we turn sooner on a straight road into Dundas. I can't remember what county road it is. But it said, "Dundas 2 miles" and that seemed like a good start. So off we went. She had some trouble with a hill or 2. But did great for her first time out in years. I decided we should stop at 8 though she wanted to keep going. I was just being cautious about her knee and crotch! But I get the feeling that she was hooked! Applebees for steak afterwards!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Partial Webster Loop

June 2, 2007

Distance = 21.05
Time = 1.36.02
Max speed = 22.0 mph
Avg speed = 13.1 mph

This is the second time I've tried to complete this loop. It's becoming a spur in my side that I can't seem to finish it. I thought about it the day before and felt like 40 miles was feasible. Sometimes longer distances are more feasible when I'm with other riders though. I've done the distance on my own before. Just seem to have some kind of block with this particular ride. The first part was no big deal. But when I got to about 8 miles, I was thinking that 40 seemed much longer than it should. I just didn't have the energy, or maybe the motivation. So I went to 10 and then turned around. It was a bit windy but nothing major. There was nothing that stood out which would keep me from completing it. Ah well. Twenty miles is nothing to scoff at. And a bad day biking is better than a good day doing almost anything else! (=