Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Hill Humiliation

Last Sunday, inspired by the beautiful weather, I decided to venture out on a neighborhood bike ride. I normally load my bike into my truck, then drive to a local trailhead and ride for many miles on a paved trail system which is mostly flat except for a few small, rolling hills. This day, however, I chose to take on "The Hill." This hill, which leads into and out of my neighborhood, lasts about 1.5 miles and climbs several hundred feet. It doesn't seem horrific when driving up it. On a bike, however, it's pure evil. I rode about 15 miles on local roads before returning to the base of the hill, already slightly tired. As I started climbing, I realized that my front derailleur wouldn't shift my chain down to my lowest chain ring (I have a triple), keeping me from choosing the appropriate gear with which to climb. This forced me to stop more than once to manually put the chain into the low ring. That excuse aside, I learned that I'm definitely not in hill climbing shape. Not yet, anyway.

That ride put me at an unimpressive 330 cycling miles so far for 2015. That ride also convinced me to take the bike to the shop for a much-needed tune up, where they will hopefully fix my shifting conundrum. I hope to still get in at least one ride this week!

In lieu of my two wheeled torture device, I decided to head out for a run on Tuesday. 3.6 miles, 9:53/mi pace. The knee did hurt, but it was a dull ache, not the sharp ache I felt when I last made an attempt. I think the slow pace helped. With that said, my knee has been very tender since the run.

I've ordered a neoprene knee sleeve on, which should arrive by Friday. I'm not convinced it will help, but for less than $20, it's a worthy gamble. I know I need to get to a doctor soon, but until then, if I can even mix in a run or two per week to compliment my cycling, I'll take it!

Oh - my daughter and I were signed up for a trail 10k for last Sunday. Due to my knee, I wasn't going to run it, but I was going to take Natalie there & cheer her on. Well, she woke up with a bad head cold that morning and wasn't up to the challenge, so neither of us made it there. Oh well...there will be other races!

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