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COVIDcation-2020: Beating the… SNOW?!


I was planning on riding at 1 yesterday afternoon… until I checked at 10 and the weather prognostication took a turn for the ridiculous.  Yesterday, the high for the day was supposed to be 48° (about 9 C).  If it made it over 36° (3 C) I’d be utterly amazed.  And the partly cloudy forecast with (late) pm showers turned to cloudy, then rain… then a chance of snow mixed in.

I decided I wasn’t going to mess around lest I get stuck in a snowstorm that was possible around 12:20 because, while it would have been easy to choose to ride with my wife on the trainer inside, we actually ran into a day with single-digit wind.  I simply had to ride outside.

I wanted to take the Venge, too.  I wanted to so bad, because it was going to have to be a fast ride and I wanted to take the fast bike.  I couldn’t do it, though.  The Venge doesn’t see rain, let alone a chance of snow.  I prepped the Trek to go and rolled out the door.

Two pedal strokes in and I was hammering for the halfway point.  I had most of the headwind at the beginning of the ride so I was trying to keep my pace up so I could have a decent average.  I’d been putting in a lot of “fluff miles” where I really wasn’t challenging myself and you always run the risk of slowing up to that easier pace (or at least I worry about that).  I plowed my way to 21-mph within a half-mile and held the pace.  I turned into the wind and managed to get to 20 where I kept it till I started up a tiny little incline and it zapped me a little.  Then I got into a mile-long stretch of the worst road in our county, before heading north again, and picking my pace up.

Five miles in, my pace had slipped and I felt like I was working way too hard for the pace I was managing (around 18-mph).  On the positive side, trying to keep a decent pace just above freezing is not easy for me.  No matter how perfectly I dress, it always takes between 1 and 1-1/2-mph out of me.  I did two laps in a small subdivision and halfway through the second, was thinking about a third (it’s a two-mile circuit), when I took notice of the graying sky.  I looked at the time on my Garmin… snow was due at 12:20 and it was only 11:40.  The sky was turning ugly, though.  Then the first flake fell.  I beat a retreat for home, the long way, and with a slight tailwind.

My ride got less ridiculous in a hurry and I made some progress on that average.  The last four miles were a mix of foul crosswind and a mile of tailwind and it was starting, ever so slowly, to snow.  I pushed those last few miles as hard as I could but I was starting to tire out.  I pulled into the driveway with an 18.3 average which, for all of the twists and turns in the route, with the cold, I was pretty happy with.

No question, though, I need some hard miles.  The easy miles are taking a toll I don’t want to pay.  And they won’t happen today.  We’ve got rain, sunup to sundown.


12 Comments

  1. unironedman says:

    No snow then? Disappointing!

  2. joliesattic says:

    It sounds like our bad weather caught up with you. It’s hot now, so take heart, that’ll probably come your way as well.

    • bgddyjim says:

      It’s been pretty horrible, but that turns around today. Looking forward to a nice long ride later this morning!

      • joliesattic says:

        Very nice. Are you working at all right now? Hubby is working from home, but we don’t know for how long, They are talking about shutting down the border next month, which means their product will be inaccessible. They handle all the hardware for commercial buildings, including hospitals and new construction. So only time will tell.

      • bgddyjim says:

        Not even a little bit. I got laid off… and the governor just extended it two more weeks! What a knucklehead.

        As for hardware… uh oh. That’s bad news for me, too!

      • joliesattic says:

        We have a certain amount we can do here, but most of it gets done across the border. Well, we’ll see. I kind of thought you did commercial. Yeah, I’ve seen the protests. I read one blog that blames conservatives, but I can’t tell who is protesting. Isn’t it bi-partisan? I was actually thinking it was liberals because they tend to like to protest. You don’t generally see conservatives out there protesting.

      • bgddyjim says:

        A conservative group was there, no doubt about it, but she pissed EVERYONE off. That was as bipartisan as you’re ever going to see.

        She did great at first, and I’ll freely give her that, but she’s screwing up bad.

      • joliesattic says:

        It’s funny, but I’ve seen Jane Fonda out there screaming her head off, that’s why I thought it was liberals, I guess. I just think they are all just a bunch of stupid people.

      • bgddyjim says:

        Well, I am of two minds on that. On one hand, our governor has gone WAY beyond necessary with her order. She is picking winners and losers and she doesn’t appear willing to understand the ramifications for what she’s doing. On the other, how can you overlook the first hand? She’s stepping on a lot of toes and making life very uncomfortable. People tend to lash out when politicians push bad policy.

        As I go, she’s paying me a lot of money to stay home, so I’ll shut up and do it. If she outlawed cycling outdoors, you’d see me in Lansing with the other protestors, though.

      • joliesattic says:

        My husband went out today, hoping he could access a favorite trail, since so many have been closed. They were supposed to reopen this weekend.

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