I wrote a post the other day on One Helluva Ride in Chelsea over the weekend. I chose to ride the Trek, my rain bike, because there was a fair chance of getting wet.
I didn’t mention in that post, the fella who stopped me at the first rest stop. He was pushing a newer Trek Domane to set on the rack, and he stopped me by asking, “Excuse me, but is that an old 5200?”
“It is,” I replied.
He asked, with a puzzled look on his face, “Did Trek Project One that bike? It’s beautiful!”
I smiled, “Nope, Matt Assenmacher painted it and I put it together. The only original parts are the brakes and chainring bolts.”
Did Trek Project One my 5200?! There’s no finer compliment for a 19 year-old Trek than that.
Trek’s Project One is there in-house customization project. It is very cool, and it ain’t cheap.
Some days are meant for putting your head down and hammering. Others are made to sit up, look around, and enjoy the fresh, 92° air. One thing is certain; all sunny days are meant for cycling.
One of the wonderful pleasures in my life is to spin an easy ride in 90+° temps (32 C) and be comfortable the whole time, after three hard, hot, fast days in the saddle. Better still are those days where you’re looking down the barrel at a thunderstorm and you think you might beat the rain but you’re not quite certain…
Yesterday was one of those days. Fresh off a pile of weekend miles (191 miles in three days in temps up to 90+ degrees) I woke up feeling okay but that quickly took a turn. I wasn’t hurt, I wasn’t overly tired, I just felt a little off – worn out. Work went well and I quickly regained my “normal” stride. We were due showers in the evening so I was quite happy with the notion I’d be sitting in front of the TV. When 4:30 rolled around, however, the sun was shining brightly and it was hot. Mrs. Bgddy chuckled and made a wisecrack when I told her I’d be riding, “As if there ever was a doubt”.
I dressed and headed out the door at 5, heading for Chuck’s house with my taillight blinking on the Trek. I got a bonus mile before catching him riding out of his subdivision and another heading back toward our normal “Monday/Wednesday Route”. A storm cloud was creeping our way from the southwest but it was far enough it didn’t look like it presented a threat. I’d arranged with Chuck ahead of time, because we’d ridden a lot of those miles together over the weekend, that yesterday’s ride was going to be one of those slow, hands on the bar tops, “spin it out” rides. He was in complete agreeance, so that’s exactly what we did.
With the sun beating down on us, we rolled in easy gears making decent time into what you could barely call a breeze. We talked a bit but for the most part, just enjoyed the scenery. A rarity, at no point in that ride did the thought, “why are we pushing this hard” enter my noggin. It was the perfect active recovery ride.
That storm cloud was getting closer, though. And I’ve played that game before, only to have to spend the next hour cleaning my bike up. I told Chuck I wouldn’t be going for bonus miles with four miles left.
I pulled into my driveway with 19-1/2 miles, taking an hour, six minutes to complete it – around 17-1/2-mph for an average. I felt like I’d won the lottery as I sat on the couch watching Rogue One (A Star Wars Story) after a chili-dog dinner with my wife’s homemade, “most-phenomenal-I’ve-ever-eaten” chili. As I was clearing my plate, the skies opened up and a smirk stretched across my face.
That’s why I ride, for that evening and feeling right there. More often than not, I feel like I’d won the lottery after a bike ride. The only thing missing was some noodle salad. I could have gone and picked some up at the grocery store, but I think the trip in the car would have taken away from my good vibe more than the noodle salad would have added to it. That’s still as good as it gets. For a Monday.