Fresh legs.

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In town gravel riding.

The past three or four years I’ve been having an increasingly harder time recovering from rides. All my life I’ve always struggled with recovery. I’m not a natural athlete to begin with, yet I have an ability to push beyond my limits. When I do go beyond my limits I take longer than most people to come back. For the ten years prior to 2015 I rode the most miles I’ve ever ridden in my life. I rode between 5,000 and 8,500 miles a year. To do this kind mileage I used a strategy of consistency. I rode 6 or 7 days a week, every week. I didn’t do a lot of big miles days, I just rode often. I felt like I was always in recovery mode. After ten years of this it took a toll on me. So last year I didn’t set any mileage goals and simply rode less. Since I don’t own a car I use my bikes for transportation. This meant I still rode a bike most days. I cut down on my pleasure rides due to not always feeling good.

Now with a new job and a new commute, only 3 miles, I find the commute is not as taxing. Even more so because of certain logistical problems of this commute I have been taking the bus to work most days. To get home I’ve been taking the bus or walking. My work site situation and my required work attire lend itself better to a walk than to a bike ride. The only exception is the use of my Brompton on a few days when the weather has been nicer.

All this to say, when the weekend comes around I find my legs are especially fresh and ready for some serious riding. It’s so different having fresh legs. It makes me realize it’s been years since my legs have felt good for a weekend ride!!! I seriously feel like I’ve been consistently in recovery mode for……forever! What a delight to ride along without effort, tackle hills like I don’t need to save anything for the next day and just enjoy riding along without that dead feeling in my legs. It’s wonderful.

As you might have noticed in the above picture it’s still winter here. We had a cold week with light snowfall on most of the days. In some locations it added up to several inches of snow. The promise of an early Spring with a 60degF Saturday four weeks ago didn’t hold up. That’s life in Northeastern Minnesota.

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