Before the race we had a brief exchange about him coming to Maine to ride in the Dempsey Challenge, and event I was also participating in. At that event, I actually met Chris and had him sign a great photo we took of him when he was in that break on the slopes of Mont Royal the month before.
I had friends that hung around after the Dempsey Challenge and talked a bit with him about his racing in Europe and specifically his feelings on the 2010 Tour de France. They claim he was a very down to earth guy, as was Levi who was also there, and it was like talking to any other cyclist we might know.
As we enter the last couple stages of the Tour of California, I will be cheering greatly for him in my living room from Maine. It is especially nice when the good guys win!
It has been a really crappy spring. I suppose this is payback for an incredibly warm, sunny, and early spring last year.
Due to all the wet weather I’m way behind in my fitness for this time of year. So much so that I’m probably going to be driving the support vehicle for an annual Memorial Day Ride that I have participated in for the past 3 years. Oh, I could probably do it, and it would jump-start my season for sure, but it would be a long day in the saddle without many miles in my legs. My longest ride, and only one at that, has been 55 miles, a far cry from the hilly 85-miles planned on Memorial Day. But there is still a chance I might ride it.
I’m not one to go out riding in the rain. If I get caught in the rain that’s one thing – but to start out in the rain to train is another. I’m not a pro. I don’t get paid to ride my bike so you won’t see me out slogging away in inclement weather. Unfortunately I’m also one that’s not willing to put the bike back on the trainer after March like others I know. Though I must say I’m seriously considering it lately.
To make matters worse, it’s been terribly windy, too. I’ve bagged a few group rides to do some gusty winds in the 35-40+ mph range. I think it’s just going to be one of those years when we wind just blows a lot, much like a few years ago.
I’m sure all this crappy spring weather will disappear only to be blessed with some warm weather eventually. It’s just a long time getting here.
The 2011 cycling season is in full swing. Or at least as much as the weather will allow. A fair bit of rain has prevented a few weekly rides but we are still managing others.
Spring weather in Maine can be hit or miss. I’ve seen 70-80 degree days in early April and also full on snow storms. Such was the case on April first this year with a good 6-inches of heavy wet snow. The up-side, if there is an up-side, to those types of storms is that the snow is virtually gone the following day.
Last week we gathered for a Wednesday night ride. The afternoon was filled with glorious sun and blue sky. By the time we gathered to ride it was overcast, windy, and snow falling from the sky. But that didn’t stop the 16 or so women who showed up to ride. The adage, “If you don’t like the weather in Maine, just wait a minute” held true because about 20 minutes into the ride it was sunny and warm again.
Regardless of the up and down temps and precipitation, we are officially on the road. Most of the roads have seen at least one pass of a street sweeper, so it was time to pull the Aegis off the trainer, swapping out the trainer tire for a road tire, and prepare it for the road.
Yup, it’s officially spring and the biking season is upon us. We’ll still be faced with cool weather wardrobe decisions for a few weeks yet. You’ll hear no complaints from me – I’ll be outside on my bike.
After posting this photo before heading out on a very chilly Saturday morning ride with the club, my friend called it “March Madness”.
I have to agree with her. It was 21 degrees but felt like 12 with the windchill. So much for March, “in like a lion out like a lamb.”
We have seen below normal temps for over a week now. It feels like it will never warm up. At least this morning it wasn’t snowing like it was last Saturday morning.
The alternative to riding outside this morning was the trainer (yuck!) or waiting for it to “warm up” but having to deal with 20+ mile an hour winds. So a cold morning ride seemed like the best option for me.
I also wasn’t alone in showing up for the club ride. We even took a club photo before the ride. (Though this only represents only part of the riders that rode, many others just weren’t in the photo because they are not club members.)
Today was my first velo commute of the year. It was 27 degrees with clear skies and happy, singing birds. I was surprised it didn’t feel very cold.
I love the early morning commute. There is very little traffic so I can enjoy the ride and the beauty of the morning. The ride home will be a bit more hectic but manageable.
It’s amazing how great I feel when I bike to work. I arrive awake and very upbeat.
With gas prices creeping higher and higher, my goal is to commute more by bike this year. Planning it out and setting specific days to commute might help me achieve this goal. It’s too easy to be lazy and drive to work so I need to make an effort to make bike commuting part of my routine.
The kits for the PVC women arrived recently so we organized a kit distribution social as an excuse to get together.
We had about 50% of our membership base participate, which made for a nice group photo.
I’m not alone in my assessment that we have a wonderful group of women ranging from 25 to 60 who just love to get together to ride their bikes. (And if you thought the 25-year-old smokes the 60-year-old on two wheels, you’d be dead wrong!) Our group continues to grow and it’s a testament to the character of the women and cohesiveness of the group. The respect and support these women give each other is truly amazing. AND we have a ton of fun!!
It was cloudier than anticipated but still nice to be out on the bike. Though I was very disappointed with a 14mph average and after 20 miles I was happy to be done as I was just pooped! I have to keep telling myself that it’s only March.
The best part about many of our rides, especially when it involves being near Pineland Farms, is a stop for coffee. Today, it was at the end of our ride.
Last week was the first official Portland Velo Club Saturday Morning Ride (SMR). However, I had been sick the week before (my first cold in 7 year) and with the rain that morning, none of the women rode, though there were a fair number of men that showed.
This week was a different story. The weather looked like it was going to cooperate (no rain and above freezing temps) so a few of the women thought we’d give it a go.
Six of us ended up hitting the road this morning. I was still concerned with a lingering cough but hoped I’d be fine with the agreement that it would be a “social pace.” Sure enough, the pace was as anticipated and I did fine to hang on.
It really felt good to be out on the bike. I haven’t been out since the end of January. Of course riding in the relatively warm sun with good friends probably contributed more to that feeling good than the ride itself.
Tomorrow we are scheduling another casual ride of approximately 25-miles. Here’s to the start of a wonderful season!