Posted by: wheelywonka | September 30, 2010

The Excitement Mounts for the Ride to the River Because We Finally Have Some Decent Weather!

…After months of training in the South Texas inferno, we finally have some decent weather.  No, not decent – that word does not do it justice.  My friends, we are having PERFECT weather for outdoor exercise.  Nights are in the 50s, the mornings are brisk and cool, the days heat up slowly but steadily to the mid-80s, the skies are clear, the air is dry, and the winds are negligible.  If you are an outdoor athlete of any type – football player, runner, tennis player, cyclist, soccer player whatever – man, you need to be outdoors this time of year.  I always feel an incredible surplus of energy during this first cool front – in many ways this is our spring, the time of year when the world feels reborn and full of potential after the endless blast furnace of summer…  

…I was so inspired by the cool weather this week that I went ahead and signed up for the half in the upcoming San Antonio Rock and Roll Marathon.   And, even though I’ve done very little running this year – a mile or two here and there on the treadmill has been about it – I laced up the New Balances on Wednesday during lunch and ran the venerable Valero 3.3 mile loop.  And I tell you – I felt like Iron Man 2 on steroids.  I forgot my Garmin watch so I had no clue how fast or how far I was running, and the batteries were dead on my MP3 player so I ran only to the sound of my heartbeat, my breathing, and my feet regularly landing on the pavement.   I finished in under 30 minutes, which for me at this stage of my training for the RNR, is not too shabby.  And, I attribute this not to beginner’s luck (this will be my third year to do the RNR) – I attribute it all to this amazing weather, and how energizing it is.

And, since the Bike MS: 2010 Valero Alamo Ride to the River is only 8 days away, I also had to do a little cycling on Wednesday.  As regular readers of this blog know, we do a little training ride on the Northwest side of town we call the Hillfest.  Our ranks for this ride have really thinned recently as the days have gotten shorter and we can’t ride as long,  but there’s no shortage of enthusiasm among the faithful for these hills.  It was Ray, John, and myself starting at our usual 5:45 time.  We chatted during the early part of the ride about how many years we had trained on this route, and about how each of us could probably ride it with our eyes closed.  I knew my legs were a little spent from the run earlier, so I hung with the guys until we crossed Boerne Stage, and then slowed down a bit and let them take off.  I pedaled all the way to Dos Cerros, then turned around and reversed course for a total of 22 miles.  With the wind at my back on the return trip, my pace picked up and I ended up with a 17 mph average.    Not a century, and not a PB, but yet another workmanlike training ride that proves to me I’m ready to ride to New Braunfels and back next weekend.

Yes, indeed – can’t get enough of this weather.  Will join up with Mike tomorrow to ride our bikes to work, and then we have the last Velo Valero training ride on Saturday, our traditional end of season jaunt on the East side of town in the rolling farmland around New Berlin (which, no doubt, will include some tacos at Brietzke’s…).   And, I get to enjoy yet another night of High School football Saturday night at Comalander, and this will be our first game with some real football weather.  It don’t get no better than that!

See ya’ on the road!

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