Wednesday, November 14, 2012

New home, new season

About a month ago I mentioned moving to Concord, MA.  Well that all happened last week.  I'm into my new place now and totally relieved.  Moving is a lot of work and stress.  Glad its over and I feel fortunate to be where I am.  It's really nice to be living in town (so to speak) again.  I'm only a few miles from work and just a short walk from everything else including Ata Cycles, Main Street and Monument Sq. which is a major meeting spot for most, if not all, the better rides in these parts.

Riding from Concord isn't all that much different from living in Harvard.  The roads are all pretty much the same.  You start everything 17 miles further east but they're mostly the same.  There are a few more ride options here though because Concord has better access to roads down south in Dover and also to great roads up in the North Shore as well.

I was going to wait until December to start training harder again but the weather has been great and I'm excited about the season I started early, and as chance would have it The Ride Studio Cafe in Lexington has partnered with the Harvard General Store to where 'The General' now carries bike stuff; mostly patch kits, water bottles and winter extras like arm and leg warmers, all branded with Ride Studio.  It's a good partnering and to kick things off the Ride Studio and General organized and sponsored a large group ride from "The General' on Saturday.  I'd say there were around one hundred riders, all totaled.

In The General with new friends, Patria, Neil and etc,
The event was well organized.  They put together three separate group rides (harder, semi and easier) each having its own route.  Each group also had a designated leader and Que sheet.  After the ride 'The General' catered chili and coffee for everyone and it was nice getting to know new people from all over the place.  My group did about 30-35 miles in and around Harvard.  I know all the roads out there really well and I'm pretty sure this route went up every steep climb, which is to say maybe ten or so hard efforts.

On Sunday I rode with Brad (V-neck) Warren from my place up to Gulu Gulu cafe in Salem.  The ride from Concord to there normally takes about two and a quarter hours but it took us over three this time because I was day dreaming or something and got us off track.  I've ridden up there at least a dozen times and know the route well but for some reason I just lost my bearings.  Funny?  I think it was probably because I'm so use to heading that way from much further west.

Lunch break at Gulu
Anyway, once we arrived at Gulu Gulu it was it's normal awesome place.  We had sandwiches, desert, and coffee. Gulu has a great selection of IPA so I tried one just to say I'd had one but I don't recommend it for training or plan on doing it again.  By the time we headed home it was after 3:00pm and daylight was already beginning to wane.  It gets dark around here at 4:45pm these days so we rode pretty hard for about an hour and a half to make sure we were close to home before dark.  My legs really hurt on the way home too, especially the last hour.  It makes sense though because it's been about two months since I rode more than two hours and we rode five hours straight out of the gate.  That's probably too much too soon but what the heck it was 60 degrees and sometimes you just have to roll to roll.

We had a lunch break in there too so that made it easier.  Having said that, five hours is still a lot more time in the saddle than my body is used to right now, especially after riding hard on Saturday.  All in all it was a solid weekend of riding, for me anyway, and basically the start of season 2013.  Here we go again.

Peace and roll strong.

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