All my riding this week had been at Mt. Dora, so yesterday I decided to head over to Wekiwa and get some miles in there.
We’ve had a fair amount of rain here at the house, and my house is pretty close to Wekiwa State Park, but apparently the forest has seen way more rain than we have. All of the low-lying sections of trail were either very muddy or had standing water. One section of trail towards the end of the ride was like crossing a creek.
As you can see, when I got back to the trailhead my bike and I were both a wet, muddy mess. Thanks to some cloud cover the temperature was not as bad as it has been of late, but the humidity was off the charts. When I returned home I was down more than 3 pounds, and that was after consuming a total of 60 ounces of water during and after the ride. Thankfully there were no ticks on me, but I definitely picked up a few spider and mosquito bites.
Thanks to the mud and standing water there was no chance of breaking any of my speed records, except one: the Sugar Sand Hill segment. This section of trail is a climb, and the sugar sand obviously doesn’t flood or collect water anyway. In fact, the rain actually makes the sand faster, so I decided to make a stab at beating my best time.
You may remember last week’s blog where I talked about how I shaved 4 seconds off my best time on the Sugar Sand Hill segment, and how I also hit a new maximum heart rate of 202 BPM on that climb (“Peak heart rate of 202 as I set two new Personal Records“). When I set the PR last week my heart rate was already pretty much maxed at 195 BPM as I entered the segment, and when I completed it my heart rate was at a record high of 202 BPM.
Yesterday when I reached this section of trail my heart rate was much lower, just 174 BPM. As I began the climb I felt really strong and–because I’ve done this climb about 100 times before–I could sense that I was ascending faster than I’d ever done it before. When I got to the top I was 99% sure I’d just set a new personal record, but I had to wait until I got home to find out for sure…
I shaved 4 seconds of the personal record I set last week, and my heart rate “only” got up to 198 BPM. It’s interesting that yesterday I started the climb with a heart rate 21 BPM less than it was when I started the climb last week, but just 30 seconds later my heart was beating 2 BPM faster than it had ever been over the past 10 years (with the obvious exception of the 202 BPM I reached last week).
Of course now that I’ve achieved a time of 30 seconds flat, I absolutely must get my time below 30 seconds. That’s going to drive me nuts until I do it, and it won’t be easy.
OK, no riding today: it’s upper body weight training. I’m going heavy/low volume today.