Tuesday, September 28, 2010

1000 Mile Challenge – Another windy day…


Sunday’s ride took me out Rte 161 towards Urbana.   Newly paved roads and a tail wind made the first 20 miles a breeze (no pun intended).   However, at the junction of Rte 4, I took the turn towards Marysville and the real work began.    Eleven miles into a 15mph headwind with a slight uphill grade.  Did I tell you I really don’t like wind???   Unfortunately that would be the story for much of the remainder of the ride as the wind would somehow find a way to tunnel right into my face.   Grueling as I rode East on Watkins road from Marysville to Rte 42.  GEDC0035

As I grew increasingly more tired, I envied the cattle that were sunning in the field.   The funny thing is I think they were as intrigued with me as I was with them, or perhaps they were thinking that I was bringing their afternoon meal.  Yes, I was definitely hungry too.


Once I hit Rte 42,  I made the decision to turn around and head West on Watkins.   Yes back to Marysville.   Why?  Well first of all I needed a way to get more miles, and perhaps most importantly, by Heading West I could escape the wind for a good portion of the return trip.   The less windy route allowed me to enjoy some of the Fall scenery as the farmers cultivated their fields.

After a 65 mile day I returned home to eat and rest.   Not hitting the mileage goal that I had hoped to, my wife and I headed out in the evening for 20 more.   My legs were screaming the whole way.   Misty could tell I was struggling with the wind and took over the lead, allowing me to draft and save some energy.   She picked up the pace and did a great job setting the pace.   It was nice to go fast again.  Thanks for pulling me along, babe!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

1000 Mile Challenge – That wind was a Bitch!!!


  Ok, so I had big ambitions to get up early on Friday and ride but I just couldn’t stomach the 3:45a wake up call and after a day of meetings and 8 hrs in the car I was too tired to do a Friday ride.    So that means another 40 miles to make up over the next 4 days.    Saturday, however, I slept in until 7:30a and hit the road at 8:05a.   GEDC0015 It was a beautiful Fall morning with the moon still visible in the Western sky.   My goal today was to ride 70 miles before my sons cross country meet in Lancaster.     Today’s route was to Prospect and beyond.   Prospect is 26 miles north of my house.   This is a favorite location for biker as the ride is very scenic and there is a little grocery store (Dexters) that makes a great place to stop for some refreshments.GEDC0025    This first leg of my trip was pretty smooth as the route was recently paved.   After a brief stop for and iced tea and a Snickers, I crossed back over the Cecil B. Ohler bridge and continued North to Green Camp.    Some clouds hadGEDC0023 rolled in and the wind picked up a bit making my already tired legs that much weaker.   But I ducked my head and continued to cut through the gusts.   The good news about a head wind is that you get to turn around at some point and it becomes a tail wind, so thank goodness the return ride was a bit easier.

I’m closing in on my goal with less than 200 miles to complete before 6:00pm on Wednesday.    I hope to put in another 70+ tomorrow.    The plan is to start with around 30 in the morning (I get to ride with my wife) then Misty and I will go to our favorite breakfast spot, Hellas.    After a little more rest, I’ll hop back on the saddle and see what more I can put in.    Hopefully the wind will subside a bit.

All for now!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

1000 Mile Challenge – A day from Hell???

Last night I hit the bed at 11:30a  after a 32 mile ride, only to rise for _JLK3415a morning 21 mile ride with my wife at 4:45a.     After a rather long day at work I hit the road again tonight at  6:45p for another 22 miles.    Needless to say I’m a bit tired.   The real challenge is that I need to get a 20miler in tomorrow morning before I leave for Louisville for a day trip.   That means the alarm goes off at 3:45a.

So you ask, “why go through all this hassle?”   Well I must admit I did have a moment of doubt this morning when I found myself about 5 feet away from a head-on collision with a car who for some reason decided to make a left turn into my path at a well lit intersection.  In an effort to miss me he swerved and almost hit Misty.   My guess, some young kid, up too early, just not paying attention to the road.   At any rate, Misty let him know how we felt.

Tonight’s ride was much less eventful.   As the sun set the temp dropped into the mid 80’s.   That’s pretty nice in my book.     I did my typical 22miler from my house out to route 42 and back.  

So once again, “why go through all this hassle?”  IMAG0100  For me the scenery has a lot to do with it.   I can ride the same route day after day and I’ll always see something new.   Yesterday it was a snapping turtle (about 18” in diameter") crossing the road.   I stopped to try to give it a hand but after nearly getting my hand bit off I decided he would do fine on his own.

Tonight was a real gem as a Harvest Moon followed me as I headed West on Harriott road.   I had to stop and get this picture.   Too bad I only had my camera phone.

 IMAG0101 One thing I’ve become accustomed to during this challenge is riding in the dark.   In fact about 70% of my riding time has been at night.    So the scenery that I see looks a lot like this.    

In reality, this picture doesn’t do the actual beauty of the night any justice.  City lights in the distance; rock quarries in full production in the middle of the night; moonlit roads in the middle of the country; a thunder storm in the distance, and my favorite, the pitch black as I escape the city.    There something to be said for the feeling of smallness and perhaps insignificance, when you’re alone in what seems like ‘the middle of nowhere’.    I, like many of you strive to be significant in this world.   Riding hard is one way that I achieve this.  

Six days remaining, 735 miles ridden, 40707 kcal burned.   I’ve got a lot of riding to do this weekend.    See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

1000 Mile Challenge – The final week!

If you’re one of my Facebook friends, I’m sure you’ve been hounded during the past month by the daily (and sometimes twice a day) messages like this one:

------------------------------------------------------------------------------Jerry Kuamoo Was out cycling 31.17 miles with Endomondo. You can see it here: http://www.endomondo.com/workouts/vtYnL7rFzBI  Cycling Workout    Calories: 1965 kcal     Distance: 31.17 miles


If these messages have annoyed you, please accept my apology.  My intent was never to annoy or upset anyone, or even to brag about the miles that I’m logging.   In reality, Endomondo is not my Peruvian masseuse as my buddy Bill thinks, nor is it the name of the pool boy that my wife has hired to keep her company while I’m on the road.   Endomondo is simply a web-based application that I use to track my cycling workouts.

On August 30th I created a challenge on Endomondo to cycle 1000 miles in 31 days.  It’s a steep goal for someone who works full-time and is typically pretty active in my personal life.   But since I rediscovered cycling, I felt compelled to do something that most riders have not achieved.   I’m not sure if my motivation is the love of cycling or simply a “bucket list” thing.   Perhaps a bit of both.  Either way, I’ve made the commitment and as those who know me well understand, I hate to fail.

It’s 10:30pm on Wednesday, September 22nd and I’ve just returned from a 31 mile.    Endomondo tells me that with 7 days remaining I have ridden 692.68 miles.   That leave just over 300 miles to go.


Tomorrow’s wake-up call is at 4:45a, the time when my wife and I typically ride during the week.  We have mapped out a route that is pretty well lit.  Of course our bikes are lit up as well for added safety.  Off to bed now for a short nights rest.   More tomorrow.