When I Was Single…

I found this picture from a few years ago.

That was my living room.  I had a couch, chair, and coffee table.  That left room for working on bikes.  What more does a guy need?  Oh, a cargo bike for using the laptop on.

Needless to say, things look a bit different in my living room these days.  However, all is not lost.  I washed the mud off my mountain bike in my shower today.  Diane even helped.  That’s devotion.

Wasted Opportunity

I planned on riding the bike to work today.  However, I was lazy and whiny this morning, and drove to work.

The morning temperature was quite cool.  When I left work, it 70 degrees.  In February.  I should have ridden the bike.  Dammit.  I drove home with the windows open.

I’m tentatively planning on working from home tomorrow, but if I’m up early and feeling good, I’ll ride in, just because I enjoy it.

 

More Weekend Exercise

As I mentioned after yesterday’s ride, I planned another ride for today.  Tim and I met up and headed to Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge for a gravel ride.

Muscatatuck isn’t that big, but it’s a good starting place for a ride, with pleasant scenery.  The planned route was just under 30 miles.

Tim and I were both on our Rawlands.  This was expected to be easy, mostly-flat gravel.  The temperature was about 50 at the beginning of the ride.

After meandering around the hard-packed dirt roads in Muscatatuck, taking in the scenery (and birds – lots of birds), we headed east along a “road” that was little more than muddy grass two-track.  I was wishing for tires with tread, instead of my fat road tires.  Well, at least we have a different route coming back.

After getting back to a real road, it quickly turned to loose gravel.  It was more work to ride through, but I liked it better than the mud.

We eventually hit pavement for a while, which felt unnaturally smooth after that gravel.  It was like cheating.

Except for a brief burst of “leaving church” traffic, there was little traffic.  It was a pleasant ride.

I mostly quit taking pictures at this point.  I was still feeling good, but I needed a bit more focus to keep moving.

On the final stretch back, we ran into a snag.  The planned route took a road (CR 300 S) that didn’t really exist.  A quick look at my GPS showed that CR 200 S to the north didn’t go all the way through.  We did the only sensible thing and headed back south to CR 475 S – the very “not road” I mentioned earlier with all the mud.

Oddly enough, looking at data from a previous ride a few years ago in the area, it appears that we did take CR 200 S, so apparently it’s passable by bike.  I don’t remember the details.

We ended it at 33.6 miles before heading home.  It was a perfectly pleasant day.  Planning a shorter ride means we don’t have to cut rides short.  I’d rather feel good about finishing a ride, than cut it short and feel bad.  I’ll keep planning these shorter rides until I build a bit more fitness.

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Feeling Fat in the Woods (Again)

I mentioned that I needed to ride during the week.  I didn’t.  I worked from home two days, drove two days, and was sick on Friday.  I hadn’t swung my leg over a bike all week.  That changed this morning.

Tim and I headed out to get some mountain biking in at Brown County State Park in Indiana.

We started with a stop while still in Louisville for doughnuts.

Tim and I have very different fitness levels these days.  We used to be close to even, but I’ve lost a lot of fitness.  We agreed to ride separately, and contacting each other every hour or so.

The weather was beautiful for February.  The trails were pretty busy with hikers and bikers.  It was pleasant.

This was my first time on the Brown County trails.  The climbs are quite serious.  I stayed on the easiest trail while Tim wandered off to ride some gnarlier stuff.

Due to aches, pains, and a terrible lack of fitness I just really felt fat and was quite slow.

My bike is more capable than I am.  It probably wishes it was sold to a real cyclist.  It took me a bit over 90 minutes to ride just over 7 miles.  That was once around the “easy” loop.  I was going to go around again, but by this time my neck, shoulders, elbows, etc hurt from the low cockpit on this bike.  I need to take the bike back to the shop for some handlebar and stem adjustments.

I’m not complaining.  Being fat in the woods is better than being fat on the couch.  I enjoyed myself, and I’m glad I did it.  It was also short enough that I wasn’t miserable.

Tomorrow, Tim and I are going back out, but for some gravel road adventure.  I’ll be on a different bike for the different kind of riding.

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Flat Butt

Flat butt is what happens when you sit on your ass too much.  I’m having that problem now.

I was going to ride my bike to work this morning, but ended up working from home.  I’ll try again tomorrow.

I have weekend plans too.

Another DBNF Sunday

As mentioned in my previous post, I did ride in Daniel Boone National Forest last Sunday.  Here it is, six days later, and I’m just now posting about it.

I rode to Tim’s place, and he drove us to Berea where we met up with Andy, who I rarely get to ride with.  We drove then to S-Tree campground, a great place to start a bike ride.

At the beginning it’s mostly easy gravel.  Tim and Andy were riding fat bikes.  I was on my Fargo with relatively skinny 2.2″ tires.

The weather was beautiful, if a bit warmer than planned for.  A clearing next to the road made for a nice place to adjust clothing.

We eventually went downhill to this old abandoned house next to a creek.  I’ve ridden by this place several times.

Although I didn’t get pictures, we had to cross the creek.  Due to the warm temperatures, I wasn’t too worried if I got a little wet.

After crossing with nothing more than one damp foot, I managed to do an endo at the edge of a puddle.  I was fine, if a bit muddy.

After continuing along the creek for a while, we needed to cross again.  I got much wetter this time.  Again, nobody thought to take pictures.

It really wasn’t a road anymore.  The path was rocky, rooty, and muddy.  It was a challenge, but also a lot of fun.

After a downhill that Tim and rode the brakes the whole way – yet Andy bombed down like a pro, the long slog uphill began.  This was the beginning of the end for me.  I walked the entire hill, and was not feeling well.

We regrouped at the top and ate snacks.

We often end up cutting planned rides short when someone isn’t feeling up to finishing the ride.  This ride was planned to be short and easier.  It was a mistake in routing that led to shortening it.  I wasn’t complaining.  I was done.

On the return leg, there was a trail that was mostly parallel to the road.  Tim wanted to explore.  Andy and I agreed, even though Andy said he had his worst experience on a bike on that trail years ago.  It was tough, muddy, hilly, and rutted.  I was covered and mud at the end of it.

We arrived back at S-Tree, then drove to Berea for food and hydration.

I could barely walk the next day.  I still haven’t been back on a bike since.  This was from a ride less than 16 miles in length.  Yikes!

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Avert Your Eyes!

In July of 2014, if you ran across me, shirtless, in Daniel Boone National Forest, I apologize.

So far this week, I haven’t been on my bike.  I drove to work one day, and worked from home two.  I plan to ride tomorrow.

Also, I’ll be back in DBNF on Sunday to ride some more “not roads”.