Saturday, April 12, 2014

Miles on Stationary Bike ≠ Miles On Real Bike, On Road

Here are the good things about today's ride, my first outside ride on my bike since October:

1) I did remember how to clip in. (I wasn't sure, going into it.)
2) I had 30 miles scheduled and was able to finish the whole thing.
3) I got to explore a new (to me) Metropark, Kensington, and it was beautiful! (Love our Metroparks!)
4) The weather. 70 degrees, sunny, perfect shorts and short-sleeve weather.

Here are the bad things: 

1) Remembering how to unclip when needed is not a skill that comes right back after not using it for months.
2) Hills on a real bike are not the same as "hills" on a stationary bike.
3) Wind in the real world happens. It doesn't happen in the gym, so I forgot how to ride in it.
4) I was too afraid to ride on the road in the park because, this being the first nice weekend day of the year, there were too many cars. Too many cars + too many potholes + road bike reflexes atrophied due to lack of use = having to ride on the paved path instead, where every adult tricycle rider, large family who likes to walk four or five abreast on the path (thus blocking the entire path) and person with little, nervous, ill-mannered dog on a Flexilead was also out, enjoying the spring weather.

So maybe I can blame my time of 2 hours and 14 minutes for 30 miles on the crowded bike path. But in reality I don't think that's entirely true. Refer back to previous blog entry on "fat". Those extra pounds make the bike harder. Also, while it is true that I have gone to spin class, which is a real workout, on and off throughout the winter... it may, or may not, be true that lots of times instead of going to spin I have just gone to ride the stationary bike at Lifetime, where I may or may not have set the difficulty level to "1" and watched episodes of Parks and Rec on Netflix while "working out". So maybe I am just a little fat and out of shape, too, and that is why I was so slow? 

Anyway, Kensington was a beautiful place to ride, and Island Lake, just on the other side of the freeway from Kensington, was even more beautiful. Island Lake is another park, and the bike path there was in perfect shape -- no cracks, just smooth pavement -- and nearly deserted. Too bad I missed the turnoff to Island Lake on my first loop around Kensington, but I'm glad I caught it on my second. 

I was actually hot at the end of my ride and had a sweat glaze on my skin. It felt amazing. I am very excited about spring but then again there is a snowflake on the forecast for Tuesday and a high only in the 30's. Sigh. Michigan, you be crazy!

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