Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Sheathed in Lycra

As a runner, I always loved biking to cross-train. Now that I've embarked on the insanity that is the "Ride to Read" though, my running has taken a back-seat to biking. In the past three months, I've cycled 274 miles and run 24.

So obviously, I haven't been training for any fall races, including the half that I had been planning on.

But that's ok. I like getting involved in another sport. There's still a part of me that wants to hit the pavement running as soon as the Ride to Read is over, but in the past couple of weeks, I've increased the distance I can bike at one time by double. I keep going further and making more steps towards being ready for the 60-mile ride. I had started out on a mountain bike, and while I knew that it wasn't as efficient as it could be, I gave it my best and pushed myself to perform. This past week, a friend lent me her road bike to use for the ride, and I've been adjusting to it. Road bikes place more weight forward on your hands and wrists, and the handlebars are shaped differently, in addition to the obvious difference that the tires are about half the size of mountain bike tires. I'm practicing, though, and am planning on riding over 50 miles tomorrow. I'm at the point now where 20 miles is an easy after-work ride, so I'm not worried about it. In fact, I'm excited to keep making progress. After the Ride to Read, I am going to continue riding and work my way up to using clipless pedals. Of course, that will be as I get back into running.

On the running front, I'm going to do a hounds and harriers run with my fiancé's German Shepherd in October. Her name is Anna, and I can't wait to do some trail running with her. I went for a very short hike with her last week, and I ran a little bit on the trail and was immediately drawn to that old feeling of flying over rocks and roots, jumping over logs and nimbly fleeting over the ground. I can't wait to spend more time out on trails like that.

In the meantime, I'll keep pedaling!

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