I got out and on the street this morning at 6:45. What an absolutely glorious time to be on the road! Everything is crisp, fresh and alive. The air is filled with bird song! Every inhalation is filled with the aroma of flowers. WoW!
This is how I want to see America. And this can be be the US of A I bear witness to if I am on the road at daybreak. I want to know this land of ours as filled with possibilities; one that is crisp, fresh and alive. And yet this can change to a view that reflects back a hot, tired, ragged and worn country if I take my time getting out and into it.
This is one of the reasons why I am trying to get myself used to not splashing cold water on my face when I take off in the AM. And there is another price I must be willing to pay to be able to move at sun up. I must be willing to tone down my previous evening's activity. While I did what amounted to almost 40 miles today, on less than six hours sleep, I was able to do so because I did not have a 50 or 60 mile day filled with unknowns.
In terms of what it cost me last night, I missed spending more time at what looked a great get together filled with networking possibilities. My neighbor Amacker Bullwikle threw a party for her house mate whose birthday it was. And there were many brilliant people from some of the more well known local high tech firms. I did stay half an hour to honor Amcker, the creative genius who drew up the mock for the cover of my book, “How America can Bike and Grow Rich, The National Bicycle Greenway Manifesto”. In fact it might have been more fun to stick around longer so I could parlay how Amacker was introducing me to her friends. She said I am a local hero........
Well I rolled across a still sleeping Palo Alto to Sand Hill Road which I climbed all the way to the freeway without getting out of the saddle. I need to build strength in my legs for this kind of pedaling because I am not going to be able to ride the long mountain passes ahead by standing up the whole time. I may need to stand to rest my crotch from time to time, but I know I cannot climb for miles and miles in a manner such as this,
I talked yesterday about the importance of doing my training rides with myself so I can really listen to my bike and the needs I have as the two of us dance together. Well today, I became aware of the slight burn I am starting to feel just above my knees on the outside of my legs. Having learned how to listen to my body from all my years in the gym, I know that In order to build that part of my lower extremities, I have to strategically rest them. And one of the ways I can do that is by standing out of the seat judiciously.
So when I was climbing the steeper part of Sand Hill on the other side of the freeway, I stayed seated for maybe 2/3 of it. This was so until knowing rest was required, I also got tired of watching a jogger who wasn't moving all that fast widen the distance between us. By standing into the pedal strokes, I almost caught him at the top.
From there I pedaled up Whiskey Hill from bottom to top while still seated on my way to the Woodside Store (aka Roberts Market). Manzanita Road was next. It branched off of Mt Home Road and let me see some of the affluent Woodside homes that few car drivers see. The road narrowed and the homes became large estates. Trees formed a canopy over the road.
All of this beauty led me back to a right turn on Sand Hill Rd that was instant climbing. Nor could I let my guard down for what was a mild surprise given how Manzanita had lulled me into easy coasting mode. Upon cresting the hill I entered the bicycle heaven of the Portola Valley. There were less bikes out than either of the two previous Saturdays but they were there and I was on this road the earliest I have been on it yet.
Continuing on to Arastradero, I barrelled up the small hill with gusto. And while seated in the saddle. The downhill I fully let loose on. Placing my trust in God and letting Him send a charge through my body to keep all my welds and bolts and wires tight and right, I was moving over 30 mph!
A short ways from where it ended at Page Mill at mile 20, I chose to do the climb over Page Mill instead of taking Old Page Mill Road which is more rural and has almost no cars. And I stayed in saddle for the whole way!
As a reward, I let myself have my first drink of water from my water bottle. Six miles later I let myself eat the energy bar I'd been saving in my buttpak for emergencies. Happy with myself for the previous pretty focused 26 miles I also drank my water bottle all the way down at the quaint little shopping village at Foothill Expwy and Magdalena.
By the time I got home five miles later, I had one the biggest rides the Eagle and I have done to date. 31 miles! Add the almost 7 Faye Saunders and I did later in the day when we went out and got flyers for the Ines Brunn show next Saturday posted and I ended up with a 38 mile day on the Eagle. To see who we visited, who we met along the way and the raffle prizes we accumulated almost by default go to the second route link below
THX 4 all of U!!
Ines Brunn Flyer Distribution Route
Note: This ride is not about me but it is a celebration of all the people who have helped me get back to wholeness physically, emotionally, spiritually, and financially. This as I stand on the shoulders of giants to enjoy the privilege of riding this bike, the only Eagle in active use west of the Mississippi ...