Monday, June 18, 2007

Weekend Biking

It was another biking filled weekend for us! Saturday, Jeff and I rode around Newport on the freshly paved Ocean Drive. Part of that route is so close to the Atlantic Ocean, that we could feel the sea spray misting us as we pedaled past the crashing waves!

Sunday, we had a club ride. There was a big turnout and we biked along some of the most scenic lanes of southern New England in the towns of Little Compton and Tiverton. There are many old buildings, farms and ocean views.

It was another strong ride for us:
Distance: 50.58 miles
Average Speed: 18.2 mph
No rest stops. We only had to stop once, at a road crossing for a total of 45 seconds before the light turned green!
You can see the map and data here.

We had sundae’s at Gray’s Ice Cream as a treat afterwards. I think the calories just vaporize after a workout like that, right? Hee hee!

It was the second time Jeff and I have ridden this route and it is fun to compare the stats from both rides and see the changes. Last time, in April, we did 51.45 miles at an average speed of 16.7 mph. We did stop a few times to take pictures, so we had 17 minutes of rest during the ride.

I know the difference between 16.7 mph and 18.2 mph doesn’t seem like much to read about, but believe me, it really feels like a big jump!

While just pedaling lots of miles results in better speeds, another thing that helps me is riding with experienced, fast cyclists. When I ride with these stronger cyclists, I unconsciously find myself matching their pedaling cadence. I end up going the speed they are going, to a point, without feeling the strain because it is exciting to be part of the pack. I find that these rides sort of ‘recalibrate’ me, keep me from settling into a pattern and show me what I'm capable of. My rides that follow, even if they are solos, are faster and stronger.

At the club rides, the racers ride fast out front. Sunday, we managed to ride at the back of the pack of racers for 8 miles, averaging over 20 mph, before settling back to a pace we knew we could sustain for the entire ride. It was pretty exciting to be able to do that much! One of our friends rides with the racers and told us that was how he started out, so maybe one day we will be able to do an entire ride with them.

1 comment:

Devorah said...

That sounds like a great ride. Congratulations on improving your stats.