2016 has been an interesting season so far. I’m almost 600 miles up, this year over last’s personal best of 7,500 miles. I feel good, strong, and am quite pleased.
I started out the season a lot heavier that I’d intended but I’ve dropped all of the weight and am starting to feel a little better in my skin. It does bother me that I didn’t handle the off-season better but I fixed it. This error in eating will be rectified though. I much prefer going into the season with a more sporty fisique.
My bikes, both road bikes and our tandem are slammin’ and operating well, after a few early season glitches were sorted out.
Our group, call us the B group, of which there are ten or twelve, including my wife, is in fine form and working well together. We are cranking out some excellent miles at decent paces. I wouldn’t say we are at mid-season form but we’re within shouting distance and that’s what July is for anyway.
The important cog in this cassette is that I’m having more fun than ever with cycling. It seems I’ve got a better balance this year than years past. Cycling is great but I’m taking better care of my marriage and work. I’m riding later in the evening during the weekdays so I can actually let the voicemail do its job. This means I get to enjoy my time on the road a lot more.
This year’s Horsey Hundred was even more enjoyable than last, which I didn’t think would be possible. Many more laughs, good times and an order of magnitude more ice cream. Oh, and we were a full mile an hour faster over the hundred and my wife did the 53 mile Sunday with the group, almost two miles an hour faster than we did the 35 miler last year. To say she’s come a long way is an epic understatement – and I’m not misusing “epic”.
Then there is our new tandem. A steel framed Co-Motion road bike tandem that’s both fast and comfortable. There is a weight penalty but it’s still got some free speed in it. Well, it wasn’t “free”, it cost more than my Venge did but it is fun. The tandem was, without doubt, a fantastic idea. At first we had a tough time getting the working together part down, mainly because we only had one test ride in before we jumped into a 40 mile group ride. This was probably way too much too soon, but it all worked out in the end so I’m calling it good. Besides, when it comes to a bicycle, I don’t do anything small.
So, not even mid-way through the season and our future is so bright, we wear shades. Life, a fit life, in recovery, is good.
A post I just read got me to thinking about a change I made earlier this year. I didn’t make much of a big deal about it but my cycling life has been made infinitely more enjoyable for it.
I started wearing a Headsweats cap or a cycling cap every time I ride.
It started last year with what my buddy, Mike calls my goombah hat which was purchased at the Horsey Hundred because I’m proud of my WOP heritage. Then I bought a Headsweats bandana for cooler weather. I bought another cycling cap and one more bandana a few weeks ago…
As you can see, with the exception of my goombah cap, everything matches my road bikes. ‘Tis as it should be.
Now, quickly to fix the Italia cap issue, I bought a kit to match the cap and my bikes. Brilliant.
As you can see in the photo above, I’m wearing the black and red bandana. They’re excellent for keeping the sweat out of my eyes and off of my glasses. Not only that, and the sweat issue is worth it alone, I don’t worry about bees getting into my helmet anymore.
I have struggled for years with sweat on my shades, especially with longer distances, because I wanted to feel the wind on my melon. I dealt with bees, at least one or two a week, because I thought the cap or bandana options would overheat me…
I was wrong about overheating, and wrong enough that I no longer care about feeling the breeze through my hair. Both the cycling caps and bandanas absorb sweat and the breeze cools the cover.
Now, with the cycling caps which I dig, I have to go with the brim up. Even though the brim down looks cooler, I simply can’t stand the brim blocking my vision. I ride in an aggressive enough position that the brim makes looking down the road difficult and no amount of cool is worth that.
I am all about long, fast miles and I like them as comfortable as possible. Being cooler and able to see add a lot of comfort to something that isn’t meant to be easy.