Saturday, June 29, 2013

Le Tour and Le Moi

The Tour de France started this morning. I watched the first stage on television and then went out and rode myself. I went north on the White Pine Trail up to 17 Mile Road in Cedar Springs and then back. That's a total of 25 miles. It was a pretty good ride, I averaged a little over 16 mph. This ride gave me almost 60  miles for the week. I also went out on Thursday between work and a Whitecaps game for a 23 mile ride. That one was only supposed to be 15 or so miles, but I got going and the loop I was on turned out to be a little longer then I thought.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Trail riding and hiking up north

We've been real busy lately with work, volunteer and team stuff. Most of that has meant dealing with large numbers of people. So yesterday Mary and I decided to have a decompression day, get away from people and out into the wilderness. There is a spot on Lake Michigan between Ludington and Manistee that is just perfect for this kind of detoxing. The beach is about 12 miles long, with hardly a soul to be seen. The hiking trails are many, varied and nearly devoid of people. In fact yesterday we did a three mile hike and didn't see anyone until we were on our way back along the beach. We also spent some time just lying on the beach all alone. Not as peaceful as it sounds because of the black flys and the high winds that made us feel like we were being sand blasted. But it was a beautiful day to just be on the beach.

Mary entering the Children of the Corn portion of our mountain bike ride
The highlight of our day was the 11 mile mountain bike ride we went on. There is a trail that loops the entire camping area. But there are also logging roads and unofficial trails that crisscross the main trail. We went off on several of those until one trail went from sand, to mud, to a 2 foot deep pond, to nothing. We went all the way to the end of the this particular trail and found ourselves in the middle of the forest, with the only way out the same way we came in. So back thru the pond, mud and sand until we found a hard packed service road that was big fun to ride on. We were actually a little surprised that we rode 11 miles. It didn't seem that far, but maybe that's because we were having so much fun. Click here for a link to the route.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Four times the fun

It seems like I'm making up for the crapping early spring we had by getting out quite often the past couple of weeks. See below.
Friday 6/14 - 18 miles
Sunday 6/16 - 30 miles
Monday 6/17 - 15 miles
We4dnesday 6/19 -18 miles

Friday morning was a quick jaunt on the 20 mile loop for Sunday's team ride, except that I rode it in the opposite direction just to keep things interesting. I went north on the White Pine Trail to 12 Mile Road, took that out to Edgerton and went south via House/Pine Island/Post. More detail in reverse in the Sunday description.

Sunday was Father's Day and we had our annual JDRF post Lumberjack team ride. Our coaches Mike and Derek and team mate Kaat all rode 100 miles of dirt trails on Saturday. They were moving a little slow on Sunday. Our team ride was a very hilly 30 mile route. It was supposed to be 40, but since it took the group 2 and 1/2 hours to go 20 miles we figured it would be best to cut the route short. This is a great loop. We crossed the Rouge River three times, rode past Meyers Lake and the Luton Park mountain bike trails. The roads were all twisty, turny, and hilly. We started by riding out of our neighborhood north on Packer and then hooking up with Post Drive for a big climb. Then we followed Pine Island to House, which follows US-131 and is a really fun road to ride. We worked our way north and west until we ended up at the sports park on Algoma and 13 Mile for an extended break. We even met a guy who was traveling by bike from Milwaukee to Syracuse. We then took 13 Mile to Summit, followed the Rouge River for a bit and turned east on 12 Mile. We rode this until we hit Meyers Lake Road and it was time to head home. We rode down Kies and past Luton Park and finished the ride by screaming down 7 Mile hill. Several of us had speeds in the 40 mph range.

Monday was the Rapid Wheelmen Time Trail in Ada. A 15 mile race against the clock. No team mates, no drafting, just you going as fast as you can. The 30 miles the day before must have taken a little out of our legs because Mary, Ian and I all had slower times than the last time we did the race. Of course Ian and I did play 18 holes of golf Monday morning, so that may have had something to do with it.

Tonight Mary needed to pick up a prescription at the Knapp's Corner Meijer. Rather than drive there we decided to ride our bikes. It was a beautiful night for a ride and we got in 18 very pleasant miles. That makes 81 miles in six days time. That feels good.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

That's more like it

Riding along on a beautiful Sunday.
I've gone out on three rides in the last four days for a total of 80 miles. That brings my seasonal mileage up to 289, not great but improving. On Saturday morning I did a solo ride of 14 miles. It was just a quick ride because I didn't want to overdo it before our team ride on Sunday. The team ride left from Elden's Shipyard in Holland. This is an annual event for us that usually draws a good crowd because of the pool and cookout after the ride. There were loops of 19, 30 and 42 miles. Mary did the 30 mile loop and Ian and I did the 42. Our loop took us through New Richmond, Fennville and Douglas before returning to the south shore of Lake Macatawa. The group stayed together for most of the ride at a 17-18 mph pace. This particular loop also has a fair amount of hills. I didn't ride Monday but tonight Ian and I went for a sprint ride down to the ballpark and back. 14 miles at and 18-20 mph pace, which is pretty good since it was just the two of us swapping off the lead. I think I'll be able to get out once or twice more before our next team ride, which is this Sunday from our house. That route is going to be 40 miles with over 1,000 feet of climbing. He he he.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Hill training

Yesterday I went out on my hill training route. It's 10 miles long with six climbs of varying difficulty. I've done this route many times, but this time I decided to map it with Map My Ride and post the result below. There is 330 feet of climbing on this route. That doesn't sound like much but if you extrapolate that over a century ride you'd have 3,300 feet of climbing, or more than the JDRF Death Valley ride. There is also one Category 5 climb on the route. That's the easiest of the climb ratings, but it is rated. This year our JDRF ride will take place in Nashville, Tennessee in late September. That ride has over 4,000 feet of climbing, so I'm likely to have lots more hill training in my future.

Create Maps or search from 80 million at MapMyRide