Saturday, July 5, 2014

Longest Bike Ride

Today I drove to and parked at the Heinz Wildlife Refuge parking lot just off route 420 and rode the East Coast Greenway into Delaware. An argument could be made that I should have ridden the bike all the way from home. But from home to the parking area is about 14 miles round trip. That would have taken a huge chunk out of my miles for the day. Maybe another day.

I hadn't planned any activity today. I figured I'd see how I felt after yesterday's Independence Day Walk and go from there. I slept until 8 this morning and my legs felt fine. We stopped frequently to stretch yesterday and I stretched again when I got home. Stretching matters. :)

Since I had no plan for today it took me the better part of an hour from decision to pulling away from home. Including coming back in the house twice (once after about a block away) to pick up things I had forgotten. This is why I make lists folks and why when I do have a plan or idea in mind I lay everything out the night before.

It was a gorgeous day for a bike ride. Once again another gorgeous summer weekend. Arthur has completely left the area so we had bright sunshine and low humidity and on top of that low temps as well.

The ECG portion that I was on more or less follows 291 in PA and Gov Printz Blvd in Delaware. The PA portion except for the part that goes onto the Chester Waterfront Trail is kind of boring. 291 is also known as the Industrial Highway and does live up to it's name. Still it was a pleasant ride on a such a beautiful day. The part along the waterfront was particularly stunning.

So who knew that Delaware has hills? Not big ones mind you. I've done bigger hills in and around Media. But when one is cruising along flat road for 12 miles and then has to climb out of seemingly nowhere....well it's a surprise. At the top of the 'hill' was a nice long descent back to the river level.

At 15 miles I looked for the next safe spot to cross over the 4 lane road and began the return trip. The return up the long slow hill was not all that much fun but I'm proud to say I made it without getting off the bike. Same for the rise over I-95 just before reaching the car.

For most of the ride my right quad was burning. It bothered me last weekend too. Last weekend I quit after 8 miles this weekend I figured I'd keep going since there was so much flat. The discomfort made those measly hills painful. Although the flats did not provide much relief. I'm pretty sure the pain is my quad muscle rebelling for having to work overtime because my hamstrings and hip flexors are weak/tight on that side. I stopped frequently to stretch everything with extra attention on hamstrings and hip flexors and while that helped it only provided short term relief. :( I need to pay attention to these more for the long haul.

And I will. But for now I'm excited to have reached a milestone on the bike. 30 miles! Yay me. It was slow. I'm slow. I'd love to get stronger and faster eventually. For now I'm happy to be able to ride comfortably and - bit by bit - a little longer.

Click here for more photos from today's ride

No comments:

Post a Comment