Fun 4th of July; One of the many things I love about cycling.
I hope my fellow Americans had fantastic 4th of July celebrations!
Me? I had a friggin’ blast! I did a total of three rides yesterday morning: a road ride with my friend William, a mountain bike ride with my friend Mike, and then a solo road ride because it was a beautiful morning and, well, I love riding!
Upon completion of my three rides I summarily blew off the yard work I promised myself I would do, and took in a movie with Lisa. After the film I played a little poker, then fired up the grill and enjoyed a burger and a few beers while watching fireworks. A good day for sure.
I was going easy on my rides yesterday, as this morning I’ve got a fairly long group ride in the hills happening and I wanted my legs to be fresh.
I did allow myself a quick weapons check on the third ride. It was a hill sprint, and I set a new PR and took down a KOM that has stood for more than two years. I felt really good during that effort, too–hopefully a harbinger for today’s group ride, “The Battle of Buckhill”.
Getting back to yesterday, it really was an absolutely beautiful 4th of July morning! I took this photograph just before 7:00 AM, which was right after I split from William in order to make it to the trails by 8:00 for my fun mountain bike ride with Mike:
Road cycling may seem somewhat one-dimensional to the uninitiated–and I was once one of those people–but it’s actually an incredibly deep sport. Like many things in life, if you want to unearth the really good treasure you’ve got to dig below the surface.
When I’m out doing a solo morning ride an indescribable feeling sometimes comes over me that is very different than the buzz I enjoy when I’m mountain biking. Not better, just different.
There’s nothing quite like riding on quiet, rolling country blacktop at sunrise. Slipping into the drops and gliding down the open road as the sun’s first rays break the horizon is incredibly therapeutic and calming. It’s moments like those when all my troubles are far, far away: Nothing exists outside the soft whir of the cranks, the gentle hum of tires on pavement, the steady rhythm of my breathing, the occasional call of a rooster or mourning dove announcing the day… it’s addictive as hell.
And, with that, I’m off to do battle on Buckhill (probably about 130-140 kilometers) with my fellow warriors of the wheel. As you probably surmised from the previous sentence, this will be far from a calm ride, but I love those, too.
When I get back from my ride I’m going to park my ass on the couch and watch the first stage of the Tour de France, which will be recording while I’m out riding. I can’t wait!