Sunday, August 31, 2008

Yesterday's Ride

So, this is my ride I did yesterday. I had intended to do 50-60 miles, but I haven't been riding as much as I should be and I have done some "de-conditioning." I still had a great ride, though. I always encourage myself by saying, "How many 42-year-old guys got up this morning and jumped on a bicycle and rode x-amount of miles?" I know there are plenty out there, but we are still in the minority.
I left home about 7am and rode through Lexington while traffic was still at a minimum, and headed out toward the Lake Murray dam. Just before the dam, I hung a left and followed the shore (what I could see of it, development and all) and headed toward the country. Lexington county still has some beautiful farm areas and a hint of cow poop in the air is WAY better than exhaust fumes! Speaking of cows, I am privileged to see horses, goats, rabbits, and even the occasional fox and coyote.
I have said before, I am not a great, or even good rider, but I did manage to stay on my bike for nearly 30 miles before dismounting at a Shell station on Hwy. 378. (They are always pretty nice there, they never act like you're a bother to come clicking into their store in bike shoes and sweaty spandex.) But at this point I was starting to wear thin, so rather than heading around to the bridges, I turned toward home. Seven or so miles later, I am on the phone (I HATE cell phones, but will NEVER ride without one) with my beautiful wife/SAG angel, asking her to fetch me please. I did manage to get 41+miles out of my tired body before she showed up to rescue me, so I am not disappointed.
Big lesson I have learned in biking: it's one thing to push yourself and try to get more, it's another thing to be hard on yourself. There are plenty of folks in this world to beat you up about something, no need to join them. Always be good to yourself and take some pride in your accomplishments; just remember, they are pats on the back to push you forward, not trophies to shove in others' faces.
Until next time, enjoy God and His creation, and hammer safely as you do so. God bless you.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Welcome to Me!

Hey, my name is Mike and I am new to this blogger-business, but excited. I am an ER nurse (more about that later) and I have been riding on the road a little over a year now. I bought an aluminum Mercier 8 speed with a triple last June and have put over 3800 miles on it since then. I have completed several metrics, like the Tour de Camden last year; attempted the 2008 Assault on Mt. Mitchell but bailed out at Marion (73 miles of hills- still proud of that!); did my first century this year in Santee, the Tour de Cure for the American Diabetes Association. I am not a great rider, heck, I'm not even a good rider, but I love doing it and love the improvements I have seen in my performance. I ride around the midlands of South Carolina (Harrell's Bicycle World, woo-hoo!) and out of Murrells Inlet when I can (Grand Strand Bicycles, woo-hoo!) and am always looking for folks of a caliber similar to my own with whom I might ride. On a Saturday morning about daybreak I like to set out to do 50 miles or so at an average speed of 15.5-16.5 mph. I am working to improve that but it's been a busy summer, not a lot of miles. So, that'll get us started for now, looking forward to writing more about my rides and reading your comments. Until then, keep hammering. Mike