Category Archives: Cycling

More cycling training

After 70 miles of commuting by bike last week, I still wanted to get plenty of mileage in on the weekend. I wanted to get at least 37 miles in, since I did 34 the previous weekend. We basically planned to do two rides, a shorter ride and a longer ride. Because I slept relatively poorly Friday night, we did the easy ride on Saturday. We rode the length of Cañada Road, Whisky Hill Road, the Portola loop and back to the north end of Cañada Road. Basically what I’ve done twice before, once with an additional leg partway up Alpine.

Sunday I thought we were going to ride about 40 miles. Well Tien was remembering the distance based on a different starting point, and as a result, we rode 52.5 miles, from Menlo Park to Los Gatos and back. I actually enjoyed this. It was a nice long ride with a couple good climbs in it (the short and very steep one on Pierce Road got my heart rate to 178 at the top.), but mostly fairly relaxing. There were only two real downsides to it: the last 10 miles I was feeling a little weak and less mentally sharp, even trying to keep food and electrolytes in me, and I also got some sunburn, because I forgot to put sunscreen on the entirety of my arms. (I had the good sense to put it on my upper arms.)

Riding with Tien has been fun, even though I tend to have a bigger appetite for levels of intensity that make you feel like you can’t take any more (see the 178 above.)

Since the ride on August 2 is full, my revised schedule of organized rides is going to be:

I haven’t scheduled anything else yet — nothing else seems to be nearby and the distance I want to do at that point on the calendar. At this rate, I think I’ll be set to get back to trail running in the winter when the weather gets rainy enough that I won’t want to bike as much.

Cycling, some progress.

My major preoccupation lately has been cycling and eating better/less.

Last weekend I rode 34 miles in about 2:33. Three or four times a week, I bike to work, which is 10 miles in each direction. I’ve gotten that down to as low as 49 minutes (including stops) when I timed myself on Monday. That means I’m actually averaging as fast as my car commute. (Car commute is only 7 miles, but hilly/more dangerous, and takes me 30-35 minutes. That’s 12-14 MPH. That bike commute is 12.24 MPH. Both including stops.) I don’t expect I’ll get much faster — significant improvement beyond 45 minutes would probably require unsafe maneuvers — the safe improvements possible are better acceleration and better top speed — not many hills in this route. I am having a fun time speeding past tourists going up the hill at Fort Mason.

Weight is down about 1 pound in the past 3 weeks, bodyfat is down about .6% in that time period. I’ve been doing some weightlifting, but not the 4-5 times a week I was doing before I got serious about the bike again.

As far as organized cycling events, I think I’m going to do a 50k on August 2. I’m planning to do a century (100 miles) on October 18. I may schedule a 40 mile ride and a metric century (100km) somewhere in between. Though, the latter is way out in the middle of nowhere and would require staying in a hotel the night before.

I don’t think I have any interest at riding longer than 100 miles and will probably focus at getting faster at shorter stuff (both hilly and flat) after that point. That’s something about the challenge of climbing a hill that’s hard to resist.