France vs SF Bay Area, and why it feels so good to hurt

tunitas_bod_againToday was our first “real” ride since coming back from France, almost two weeks ago. Life really got in the way; we got back so late Monday night that Tuesday-morning’s ride didn’t work out, did get to do Thursday’s regular ride, and then Sunday I was off on a place to the midwest for 6 days, killing a whole lot more rides (but did get in a short ride with Kevin Sunday morning before leaving).

So today, yeah, I was really looking forward to something substantial, knowing that it likely wasn’t going to feel all that great. Kevin and I opted for the usual reference ride, heading up Old LaHonda, over to Pescadero, and return via Tunitas. Lots of high-quality climbing. And, as expected, it was the climbing which felt most-comfortable. I’ll admit that Kevin did drop me towards the top of Old LaHonda, and I’ll also admit that wasn’t too surprising. Still, my time was 22-something and I was thinking a 24 would be more-likely.

Of course, riding over Old LaHonda and down the other side, comparisons to France were inevitable, and seriously, our roads are pretty awesome here. Even heading out to Pescadero I’m thinking what a nice road, good pavement, very little traffic. And, in all seriousness, can anything compare to the Pescadero Bakery? While there, we came across a woman from Half Moon Bay who mentioned that she really enjoyed my posts from France.

Tunitas, now that was interesting. I felt really good on the steeper sections, while Kevin was in some difficulty. I did some intervals, pushing hard for a bit, then easing off and waiting for Kevin to catch up. As expected, when it leveled out towards the top, Kevin took off and it was all I could do to hold his wheel. Why he can put so many more watts to the pedals on the flatter part, I don’t know.

About 58 miles, just under 6000 feet of climbing. One flat (a very rare thing for me, but I’d hit something off the sidewall of the rear tire in Woodside), and a suitably-high Strava “suffer” score. Good times on bikes!

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Heading to 3 corners of the world

So at the conclusion of TrekWorld on Wednesday, which my brother Steve and my daughter Becky attended with me, it was an interesting scene at the airport. After all three of us first flew from Madison to Chicago, we then went in three different directions.

Steve joined up with his wife Teri and took a plane to Belgium, where they’ll be doing a Trek Travel trip. They love the Trek Travel trips; 100% no-hassle bike vacation. Just a tad bit different from what Kevin and I do!

Becky took a plane home to San Francisco. It felt odd seeing her off; like I was abandoning her. Obviously, at 28, she can take very good care of herself, without help from anybody else. Still, it felt a bit odd she was going one way, me another.

Which gets to the “me” part. As a member of the Board of Directors of the NBDA (National Bicycle Dealer Association), I had to be in Minneapolis to be part of an interview team that’s selecting our next Executive Director. In a nutshell, yesterday was a very, very, very long day. 3 candidates, interviews of about 2 hours, each one followed by about an hour and a half spent debating their suitability. Followed by a long evening in which the overall merits of each were discussed.

So that’s why you haven’t heard anything from me. I’ve been busy in a manner that defines an exhaustion you can’t compare to the toughest of bike rides, because those bike rides make you stronger, and this… it’s not something you ask for more of so you can become tougher yet.

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