Today was my first ride in two weeks relatively cold-free. Nearly all of the hacking is gone, nose pretty much clear, just fighting the effects of a “light” ride last Sunday (a whopping 20 miles) and skipping Tuesday’s rain ride. So yes, overall, I’m in a bit of a weakened state. Knowing that, I was going to do an “easy” coastal loop, the usual up Old LaHonda, over Haskins, Stage Road, and return up Tunitas.
But after doing things so many years, there’s a sort of auto-pilot that kicks in. You start up Old LaHonda at an easy pace, but then you find a rhythm and switch from easy to “sustainable.” So your planned 25-something becomes yet another 22-something. Haskins? Same sort of thing, as you look at your timer and start thinking, maybe, I can get under 10 minutes. Close. Almost. Not quite. And then Tunitas. No headwind, so you’re making pretty good tracks across the flat bottom section, and you start thinking you shouldn’t “waste” such conditions, and maybe you can get something under 50 minutes (I did).
Sure, it would have been nice to ride faster, to feel just a bit better. Pretty sure I didn’t leave anything on the table though, as I felt like falling asleep when I got home, and that never happens in the daytime. And that got me thinking. I’m 58, and much as I whine about my breathing issues, if you’d asked me, when I was 15, what I wanted to be doing when I was 58, pretty sure this is it. I am living the cycling dream. –Mike–