Trip Summary

Day 52: 2929 miles completed, 8 states, 7 flat tires, 4 flat mattresses, 40 new friends and Bruce #1, 8 rest days

Saturday, January 24, 2015

January Ride in Wisconsin

One doesn't get many good opportunities to ride a road bike in Wisconsin during January.  Today appeared to be a good day:  roads free of snow and ice, 32 F rising to 40 F, calm winds.  A chance to experiment with the Garmin GPS, test cold weather C2C clothing, gauge my fitness level with some climbing.

A half mile into the ride a rubber band which secures the Garmin flew off.  Fortunately I saw it, stopped, located the band in the road, and re-attached it. Back on the bike I proceeded on my planned four hour ride.  Not sure if it was the wind, the weather, or my leg warmers, which were constantly sagging toward my knee, my pace was much slower than usual.  My laborious pace caused me to question my fitness.  Had I lost that much speed in during my three month indoor training?

As I struggled on my first short climb, two miles in, I heard a strange noise coming from the bike. It didn't take long to identify the source of the noise - my rear wheel was rubbing.  Tried spinning the wheel and it stopped.  Shoot, I did not bring a spoke wrench.  Loosened the brakes; still stopped. It was rubbing on the frame and just needed an adjustment.  My pace quickened a bit, but I was still struggling.

After thirty minutes, I was tired of pulling up my sagging leg warmers every two minutes and stopped in on the side of the road to rearrange my clothing.   Apparently I need larger thighs.  Leg warmers off.  Tights off (brr). Leg warmers on under shorts, and tights back on.  Now I am ready to climb Paoli hills.  As I get to the top, I shift into the big ring and "SNAP", my front derailleur cable breaks. I can no longer use the big ring.  Quick decision to return to the local bike shop (LBS).

Having a terrible ride, should I continue or just go home and take a nap.  I figured I needed a good assessment of my fitness, so I hit the road on a route that normally takes less than two hours.  I should be home by 2 PM.  Although I feel like my training indoors has been going well, it appears that I have lost a lot of speed/fitness.  The ride took two hours and twenty minutes.

I have a lot of work to do and only 41 days before Coast 2 Coast 2015.

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