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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Racking Up the Miles

I didn't ride in the official Tour de Shawnee. Even if I'd had the dough to throw at the entrance fee, which I didn't, it wouldn't have fit my schedule.

But riding from my Dad's today, I toyed with the route. I was reminded when I got on 55th and saw the orange arrow-circles painted on the road. I would have gone down one of my favorite hills, west of Rosehill and 55th, but the arrow told me to turn left at Rosehill and I obeyed. I continued to follow the route until Renner Road, when I realized that I'd be heading north with a pretty brisk tailwind.

That would mean returning, some way, with a brisk headwind, right?

Plus, I remembered the insanity when I rode this route last year, not sure if it's identical, but there was a stretch where the arrows led you to riding the breakdown lane of Shawnee Mission Parkway between Woodland and Midland, a stretch which might as well be an Interstate for all the business bicycle traffic has on its shoulder.

So I went south, taking the headwind on the way out to get a tailwind coming back, and life was good. It was hot, but not like it was until a couple weeks ago. The breeze actually cooled you some, and my bike computer's temperature never went above 102ºF, mostly stayed in the mid 90s.

By the way, sponsor me please. I'm fairly desperate, it's less than a month until Bike MS and I still don't have the minimum fundraising to participate in the ride. I'll do the really hard part, riding 100 miles on September 25, 80 on September 26. All you need to do is open your wallets up and help out a great cause.

I still wonder if I'm ready for the big event, though I've got more miles in the saddle than I did before last year's (almost 1500 miles in 2010; I only had around 600 prior to last year's). In fact, I have over 400 miles in August alone and the month isn't quite over yet. I don't own a scale, but people have commented that I appear to have lost weight and I can wear a couple of 2X Aloha shirts that have been in my closet most of the past few years. I got skinny enough to wear them, sort of, last summer around this time, but they were still a tad snug. They still don't flow as roomily as I'd like, but progress is progress.

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