Friday, May 9, 2008

I'll get out on the road - sometime!

So the best intentions don't always turn out. We picked out flooring yesterday, and then we had Thai takeout -- and after that, it was work for me. So no cycling, even on the stationary bike. Then I slept like crap, so no biking for me in the morning. Tonight, Duffy's drama club has its performance -- so, instead of 20 miles a day, I'll have a total of 0 in the last 2 days.

But, not all is lost. With nothing big planned for Saturday, I think I'm going to finally get up Waggoner's Gap road. From the best I can tell, the climb is approximately 1,000 feet (500 at the start of the incline, and then finally leveling off at 1,500 feet) over approximately 2 miles (11,000 feet). Or an average 9% incline - but that is misleading, as this is a concave hill (gets steeper as you climb).

Ken Kifer has done the math, but I ride, on flat ground, somewhere between 14 and 21 miles/hour. I can really push myself and get things up to about 25, but I can't sustain that. In fact, I can't really sustain anything more than 17.5 (on flat ground) for much beyond 10-15 minutes. Now, if you scroll midway down Ken's page, you'll see the speed change and appropriate gear for a 200 lb. ride (which means rider, gear, and bike -- I'm much closer to 300 lbs. when you put everything together, but we'll keep his numbers going). At the top of this hill, if we assume that the climb gets to a steady 12% (as high as he goes, but I know I've hit moments of 18% grade in climbing the "baby hill" that I will need to climb on the return of the loop), I'll be lucky to maintain 2.5m/h in my lowest gear. In other words, after doing the math, I'm not feeling so bad about not making the whole climb yet.

I've NEARLY done the first climb, so I think tomorrow will complete it. Heck, just to loop around from this climb means that I'll be on the bike for 42 miles.

But I'm not writing today because I wish I was on the road more, or to try to talk myself into the damn hills around me. No - I finally have everything in place to start biking to work. I have three changes of clothes, a pair of shoes, a few pairs of socks, and some stuff to clean myself up here at the office (nevermind breakfast foods and fruit). If the weather plays nicely, Monday will be my first day (I know many hardcore bicycle commuters say that there isn't any weather that should be avoided, but I don't want my first ride to be a miserable one. Hopefully the weather will be pleasant enough for the trip over, and for the trip back. It's ONLY twenty miles, which I've been doing without a second thought for quite some time, but the roads are hilly, there are cars everywhere, and I don't get a chance to lie down and take a nap if I'm tired at the end of things. Still, though, I'm finding myself looking forward to a Monday morning for the first time in recent memory.

Today's Riding Stats
Today's Pre-Blog Mileage: 0
Anticipated Post-Blog Mileage: 0

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