It's hard to believe how fast this summer is flying by! I've been doing my best to get out and enjoy it while it's here.
Last week I manged to get out for three rides. I rode with my friend Tom on Tuesday. We recorded 56.3 miles which included a nice hill climb on the Riverview Drive/Highland Drive loop, just southeast of Post Falls, ID. The loop itself isn't terribly long, but it contains several rolling hills and one pretty big one (relative to what I've been riding). The loop ended with a very fast descent. I'm not terribly confident in my descending ability (and always nervous about loose gravel), so I usually tap the brakes occasionally just to stay somewhat under control. Still, we were doing over 40 mph. down the hill!
I did a solo ride of 32.3 miles on Thursday (flat and sort of fast), followed by another solo ride from Argonne to Coeur d'Alene and back (60.6 miles). I felt a little knee soreness during the last two rides, especially when pushing and/or climbing. With the Coeur d'Fondo coming up in September, I should probably invest in a professional bike fitting. I'm sure some adjustments are in order.
I did avoid any cramping this week. I started using Succeed S-Caps, along with my gels and drinks I had been using. While I felt little hints of possible cramping in my legs during a couple of rides, it never happened.
I also feel like my fitness has taken a jump the last couple of weeks. I'm not sure if that's because I've started doing a little climbing or not, but I notice that I don't get winded very easily during rides now, unless I'm really hammering. I seem to recover a little quicker, too.
I also did one run with the dog last Wednesday (mostly on dirt trails), to check in on my knee. There was some pain, but it wasn't terrible. However, my knee ached for a day or two after the run, so I still probably shouldn't run on it.
On Saturday, my wife, oldest daughter and our dog all set out on a family hike on some trails we didn't even know about, prior to my internet research. They're only about 20 minutes from our house, but they feel like they're out in the middle of nowhere. We intended to hike about 5-6 miles, but we got confused on the unmarked trails and ended up hiking 10.4 miles in the heat. We ran out of water, and my dog decided he was going to plop down in the shade several times as we were walking. During the hike, he drank all the water in his bottle and some left in mine that I saved for him. I was a little worried about him, but he made it, 3 1/2 hours later! I looked at our course on Strava and I now know the right trails to take whenever we do the hike again.
Thus ends my boring rambling. Get outdoors this week and sweat!