Sunday, June 5, 2011

A Ride in the Country

I was up before 8:00 this morning to get out for a 30 mile ride on the back roads of Douglas County. In truth, I should have been out much earlier, but my wife and I went out to celebrate our 18th wedding anniversary last night and it was a late bedtime.

Nevertheless, I knew I needed to get out there and work off last night's steak au poivre and duck-fat-fried fingerling potatoes (those are really good by the way)!

So a little after 8:00, off I went. Many may think of the area east of the front range of the Rockies as being essentially flat. In most cases you would be correct. However, my little stretch of the Front Range is the exception. Eastern Douglas County is characterized by rolling hills and a fairly high altitude. In fact, my average altitude for the ride was over 6300 feet. In addition, it was one of those rides where I felt like I was always going up hill. As you can see from this profile, there was definitely a lot of up and down:

Despite all of that, traffic was light and the cars I did encounter were always courteous enough to give me a wide berth. What's more the scenery was fantastic. My iPhone does not do it justice but these may give you some idea:

Looking back west at one of the rolling hills I just climbed

Looking southeast toward the town of Elizabeth.

Some of the climbs were steep enough that I actually went into the small ring and still pushed mightily to ascend some of the hills. It's a sure sign you're climbing a steep one when it's about all you can see in your forward view.

Having completed the ride, I feel pretty good. In addition to the training, I got a chance to test out Gu Brew Electrolyte drink. Unlike the much-too-sweet Powerade I had along during the Summer Open Sprint, this was much more diluted and went down without any trouble. I have an extra packet so I'll probably be bringing it along in Greeley next week.

I have a much deserved day off tomorrow and then light workouts Tuesday through Thursday. I think I'll be feeling nice and rested on Sunday morning and ready for my first "real" tri.

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