SPEED: 11.3 avg
CALORIES BURNED: 1,115
OVERALL: Best 5-mi time yet, Form, endurance both fair and getting better
Back to the grind at Miramar Reservoir. Wanted to see if the work of the Bike Whisperer still held up.
It does. Big Lizard rides as beautifully now as it did when it was new. That’s the good news.
The bad news? Once again, the bike is in far better shape than its rider. Still, even with two inexcusably long layoffs, there’s progress.
Shaved three minutes off my best 5-mile time since taking Big Lizard out of his involuntary retirement this summer. The overall average speed is firmly in double-digit country again, and top speeds are creeping up toward 15 mph country.
I started out this summer on my smallest chainwheel up front, the so-called “granny gear.” Have now worked my way up to the middle ring, and that’s a good feeling. Still not yet ready for the big time — the big chainwheel up front and the big cog in the back that represent my highest gear.
(You don’t start out trying to push your biggest gears right off the bat; you can hurt your knees that way.)
Little by little, I’m sneaking up on the big gears.
A would lighter bike improve my times? No doubt! Big Lizard is built like a tank — and that’s exactly what I want right now. I want the heavy bike, for the same reason that gym rats slip an extra iron plate or two on the barbell set.
The harder the bike makes me work, the stronger, faster (and ultimately lighter) I get.
Also, I want to do some bike tours. That means pushing a bike loaded down with gear, panniers stuffed with clothes, food, water, spare parts. So I might as well get used to pushing a heavy bike early.
For now, the goal is to improve my one-lap average speed to 15 mph. Then, I’ll be ready to “up” the daily routine to two non-stop laps per run, 10 miles instead of five.
When I can hold a 15 mph average comfortably for 10 miles without stopping, then I’ll be ready to join the Major Taylor Cycling Club of San Diego for some of their club rides. Really looking forward to that.
But my biggest dream is to lead bike tours of my own — through Africa. That would be the achievement of a lifetime.
Just back from a PM run at the reservoir. Had to do it. Reason: I was a ba-a-a-a-a-d puddytat at dinner — three soft tacos, a small ocean of tortilla chips and salsa, and a Coors Light on draft.
Yeah, I know. (Hanging my head in shame)
Anyway, I figured I’d better go back out there and try to burn off some of my dietary transgressions.
It was either that, or wait for the ghost of Dr. Atkins to slap me upside the head.
If the reservoir loop is busy with joggers, strollers and rollerbladers in the morning hours, it’s Times Square in jogging shorts in the evenings. And they all hog the centerline, making it difficult — and at times, even dangerous — to pass them on your left as you’re supposed to. Still, I was determined put put up the best time I could.
So what happened? Here’s what happened:
SPEED: 12.25 avg
CALORIES BURNED: 1,106
OVERALL: Ohhh, BABY!
Short form: I kicked Miramar’s [BLEEP!] tonight… and damn, but that feels good!
Still, I’ll be taking it easy tomorrow, just a nice, easy cruise around the lake. No point going nuts and dealing myself a setback.
But to knock four minutes off the previous best time is grounds for celebration. Think I’ll go downstairs and pop myself a nice, cold…
… glass of ice water. On the rocks. No salt.
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