Need to Ride

I feel fat and lazy, but I’ve been reading older posts here in preparation of migrating the blog.  I need to ride.  I’m horribly about it now.  I used to be much better – even when I rode from Charlestown.

My current commute is not ideal, but it’s no worse than the Charlestown commute.  I need to quit making excuses and ride.

The bike is packed for tomorrow.

Friday Commute

I don’t ride my bike to work often enough anymore.  I did ride Friday though.

I headed out in the morning to decent temperatures and wet roads.  I rolled a pleasant route through Cherokee Park, stopping for a picture at Hogan’s Fountain.

I was quite slow.  I’m not a morning person, and I’ve gained too much weight.  I pushed through and was glad I rode.

I have a shower at work, so I used it.  Although I’ve been bike commuting for years no, this is the first job where I had easy access to a shower.  It’s quite nice.  I’d trade it for a shorter commute though.

While at work, I took a selfie with a robot – because “why not?”

It was Friday, so of course I’ve gotta have some beer after work.  Diane agreed to meet me at Apocalypse.  I rode much faster in the afternoon.  The warmer temperatures helped.  It wasn’t morning, that helped too.  The promise of beer probably had a bit to do with it too.  I set three PRs on Strava on the way to Apocalypse.  I felt like a cyclist again.

We were puppy-sitting last week.  Diane brought Baxter (her dog) and Sophie (the temporary dog) along.  Sophie is adorable, even when trying to steal beer.

I limited myself to three beers then rode home.  Sophie was picked up and went home a few hours later.  I’ll miss the cute puppy, but not cleaning up after her.

32 miles for the day just for commuting.  I’ll take it.

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East-End Bridge Ride

The new east-end bridge (Lewis and Clark Bridge) opened last month connecting IN-265 to I-265 across the Ohio River.  It’s a toll bridge, but I managed to drive my car across last month before tolls started.  More importantly, it has a bike/ped path along the side.  I wanted to ride that.

Saturday’s weather was unseasonably warm with a slight chance of rain.  It was really quite nice for January.

I met up with Tim for coffee before we rode out wandering through neighborhoods, to St Matthews, eventually winding our way through Indian Hills and to River Road.  I struggled to keep up with him on (dead flat) River Road, forming a mini-paceline of two.

Crossing the river on the bridge gives a new perspective to Utica Indiana.  I’m not use to seeing it from above.

The path ends at Old Salem Road.  To the south, the road is closed.  That will eventually connect to Utica.  We went north to Waterline Road and took that back to Utica.

We got separated a bit after leaving Utica.  We both know our way.  When we did meet up again, we agreed that he’d go ahead.  I was cooked.  I think the fast stretch up River Rd did me in.

I rode back to Jeffersonville alone.  I took my time and rode at my own pace.  The Big Four pedestrian bridge was fairly busy due to the nice weather.  I went slow and took pictures.

The Big Four Bridge has a nice view of the other new bridge – the Abraham Lincoln Bridge.

I rolled back into town and met Tim at the bike shop.  We then went for coffee – then beer, yes, I cheated a little again.

After that I ran by his house, then home.  My GPS lost some data, so my total distance was actually 41.6 miles.  I don’t do that kind of distance much anymore.

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Little Cheats

Yes, I quit drinking alcohol for the month.  I’ve had two “exception days”.  Last Wednesday was my sister-in-law’s birthday.  Four of us went out for drinks.  I had four beer – that was probably a bit much.

Yesterday after the adventure ride, Tim and I had pizza and beer.  I had a more acceptable two beers.

I have nothing else on my calendar that can change my plans.  So, I’m done until February 3rd.  I’ll only be drinking on Fridays and Saturdays.

Livingston Adventure Ride

Tim planned a course leaving out of Livingston KY for adventure and a little mixed-terrain.  I grabbed the Fargo and off we went.

We headed out of town on the “busy” road.  Busy roads aren’t very busy in that part of the state.  There were a couple of climbs to warm up.  Temperatures were near 50 – 10 degrees warmer than anticipated.  There was a little mist and fog.

We turned on to some great gravel on Mullins Station road.  It ran along a creek for a while, then crossed over railroad tracks a few times.  I almost fell once due to my own klutziness.

We eventually came to an area with a small train tunnel, and the remnants of a mine.  There was also crushed coal all over a loading area of some sort.  The coal was hard to ride across due to being laid over the top of soft mud.

We eventually came to a bit of a community along the road.  It was marked at the ends with cattle guards across the roads, and no-trespassing signs.  We were a bit concerned by this.  It was supposed to be a county road.

While was we were trying to figure out what to do, an elderly man came out of the nearest home.  He said we could go through, so that’s what we did.  There were many dogs, a few pigs, a bunch of cows, and one very large horse roaming around.  The horse was actually frightening.

I didn’t get any pictures here, as I was starting to suffer a little.

We rolled along the flat section for a while, then came to paved roads and another climb.  I was beginning to slow dramatically on the climbs.

Near the top of this climb, were two large rocks making quite a view.  Tim waited for me there, as this was the turn off for a road he had found on a map.

The road was easy gravel and it ran along the ridgetop, so it wasn’t too hilly.

After a while it got much more rustic.  There was mud, a lot of puddles, roots, rocks, and general “mountain bike-like terrain”.  It was a lot of fun.

As fun as it was, it was challenging.  The rain kicked up at this point and the temperature dropped.  Tim was losing his brakes in the muck.  My bike made bad noises, but was fine.

After turning onto another paved road and enjoying a brisk descent, we came along a ridge road for a while, where two guys were shooting shotguns across the road.  Tim seemed quite bothered by this.  I simply got their attention, they stopped shooting, we rode past, and they continued their fun.

A while later, Tim pulled ahead of me, then I walked a long climb.  I found him waiting for me at an intersection.  He was cold and wet.

He headed out again, and again, I was too slow.  We regrouped at a shelter next to a cemetery and discussed options.  We were both beat.  I was too slow.  We’d head directly back to the car from there.  It was still another six miles.

We headed out, Tim was told not to wait for me until he reached the car.  I walked another climb, then had a very brisk downhill run most of the way into town.

Just as an aside, my memory isn’t good at keeping track of the order that these events take place.  I think I written them in the correct order, but I moved paragraphs around a bit.  The writing may seem a bit disjointed.  I took fewer pictures as I got into the ride due to just trying to keep up.  Tim’s account is probably more accurate.

Also, I had planned for 40F and rain.  It started out closer to 50F and no rain.  I ended up shedding my gloves and hat.  Later, when it cooled, and I never bothered to put those things back on.  I was glad for the heated seats in Tim’s car when we were done.

I wan’t physically ready for this ride, and I told Tim that ahead of time.  He made the very good point that I needed to ride it to get in better shape.  I’m glad I did.  I had a great time.

Thanks for the great route, Tim.

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No Alcohol in January

I’ve “quit drinking” a few times over the last few years.  It never “stuck”.  I enjoy beer, I simply enjoy it too often.

After a night out on New Years Eve with Diane, I gave up alcohol for a month.  I had been drinking daily, so I really need to cut back.  Once February is here, I’ll only allow myself to drink on Fridays and Saturdays.

It’s only been a week without alcohol so far, but my body is already happier – especially my digestive system.  I’ve also lost 4 pounds – only 76 more to go.  🙁

I still need to limit myself once February gets here.  I also need to control food intake.  I need to ride my bike more.

Frigid Mountain Biking

I have a fancy new dual-suspension mountain bike.  I should damn well ride it already.

Tim and I headed out to the Parklands to ride some trails.  It was 11 degrees.

The bike was in it’s element.  The bumps are soaked up the suspension.  I just need a stronger motor.

The creek crossings were a frozen mess, but we both managed them without falling, or breaking through the ice.

It only warmed a little, but is was a pleasant day.

It was only about seven miles, but it took us about 90 minutes.  That’s mostly because of how unfit I currently am.  I’m working on fixing that.

Afterward, we warmed up with a cup of coffee.

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