It’s the middle of winter in Michigan and surprisingly, the weather resembles March more than January the last few days. It’s been a nice break after a month and a half of temps 15-25 degrees below average, so we’re making the most of it.
Mrs. Bgddy and I ditched the gravel bikes for the tandem again. The wind was howling and I don’t mind the wind as much on the tandem. Thankfully Mike and Chuck were good to us when they were up front.
If you remember my post from earlier in the week, I learned a little something about riding the tandem with my wife. I learned how to be a little more efficient by taking just a little bit off of my pedal stroke. That post short, I was fighting against my wife by pushing too hard and not only was it not doing any good, I was doing myself in 15 miles into a ride. Not a big deal if you’re only riding 20 miles, but when you’re looking at closer to 30, running out of gas at 15 sucks.
The wind was out of the southwest and we were starting out stair-stepping the wind. West first, then south, then west, then south. The whole first half of the ride was absolutely brutal. Brutal. My wife and I took a big turn up front, something like three or four miles, and when we turned south I expected to struggle to keep up. Instead, Chuck took the lead and really took it easy on us so I actually had some time to recharge. Then Mike took over and kept that same pace – it was awesome. Unfortunately, we also had Doc Mike with us and he hammered the pace a bit (not his fault, he’s a bit of a horse). For our turns up front we tried to hold the pace that Doc Mike had set.
Speaking of Doc Mike, and finally getting to the point of the title, he asked me how I was feeling after 42 miles the day before. I wrote yesterday that my back’s been talking to me a little bit, and my back was certainly a mess in the morning, but I spent about a half hour stretching out before we rolled and that helped a lot. On the other side of that, the rest of me was feeling awesome and I hadn’t thought about the mileage wear and tear until Mike asked.
I love the fact that I’m in good enough shape that I can do what I want to do. 42 miles on Friday, 28 miles on Saturday, and whatever we end up doing today. I love that I’m fit enough to enjoy the bonus miles.