Another very surprising ride this morning. At the start just myself and Kevin (kid) but saw quite a few more cyclist on the roads than normal. Probably people trying to get in a ride before the day heated up too much. The surprise was that I was able to put one foot down, then the next, and keep repeating, over and over and over (I mean, how else are you going to get up a hill?) but at a pretty steady and strong effort. The timing points were all looking pretty good. Would have liked to have gotten to the first hard-left after Huddart at 10 minutes, but was only 15 seconds or so behind that pace. Memories of the old days say you have to get under 10 by that point if you want a decent time. But the concept of decent time has changed over the years, so what was necessary for a 26-something isn’t quite needed for a 28-something.
I kept going and going and never really felt like I was going to fall apart. At least not until spittin’ distance of the top, when you start worrying whether you can hold it together long enough to stay under 29 minutes. At some point I even dropped Kevin (kid), who wasn’t on top of his game today. Probably about the same time I picked up Kevin (pilot), who’d left 5 minutes ahead of us.
In the end, 28:50, fastest time since June 2017 (and that particular ride was a bit unusual, being faster than anything the prior year). Makes me wonder how my son could ride with me last year, thinking how much slower I was then. Since WOLH is still under construction, we did Native Sons road this time, another fun little dead-end road off Skyline. Pretty steep climbing back out, but as on Kings, I felt surprisingly good, dropping both Kevins at one point before becoming social and waiting for them. This, too, shall pass.
There’s no question some of the extra speed is the result of shedding some weight when I broke my pelvis. That’s pretty much stayed off, which is a definite surprise. At 6 or 7 or 8 pounds heavier, the science says I’d definitely be about 30 seconds slower, maybe more. I much prefer faster.