Cyclography might just be too hazardous

5 Apr

I took a “sick day” yesterday because after several long hours and days and weeks at work, I needed a personal day to decompress.

My plan to laze away on the couch and watch baseball all day (thanks, Comcast MLB package!) was thwarted, though, by the guilt I felt when I looked outside and saw a sunny, 75-degree day.  Seriously, it was the best day of the year so far, an absolutely perfect day to be outside doing something fun.

Since I had run Cherry Blossom on Sunday and knew better than to run the day after a 10-mile race (see?  I’m learning!), I decided to take my bike out for a spin.

I’m so happy I did.

Heather and D? Cyclists in love

I started out nice and easy, biking down Rock Creek and veering on to Canal Street, stopping to take some photos and enjoy the sun and the views of the Potomac.  Then I got on to Capital Crescent Trail without any real plan of how far I should go.

I knew I wanted to do a long bike ride since I was in no hurry to get back but I thought I should probably only go 15 miles max.  It had been awhile since I had biked regularly and didn’t want to do anything stupid.

Speaking of stupid…taking photos while cycling?  Not the easiest thing to do.  I liked the results of my Hispatamtic experiment at the Cherry Blossom race, so I figured I’d go with that photo app again.

But balancing yourself using one hand and shooting from the hip while traveling at more than 15 mph is downright dangerous.  There’s a reason I’m a runographer and not a cyclographer.

Don't fall off...don't fall off...don't fall off...

The first few miles were tough, probably due to the wind and my lack of muscle memory on the bike.  I struggled to get any real speed and wondered after 5 or 6 miles if I should cut the ride short.

But then, just like when you’re running and something clicks, I started to feel good.  I pedaled faster and more efficiently and the sweat and heavy breathing became more manageable.  I reached Bethesda after about 10+ miles and turned around.

The way back was even better.

I was churning faster and faster and in my 15th mile, was really moving.  I looked at my watch and saw a pace of 2:58, which I calculated to be more than 20 mph!  Since I’ve never run that fast, obviously, and had never biked at this pace, I realized I was propelling myself faster than I had ever gone.  I biked that mile at a 3:07 pace, and paced 10 of my 20+ miles under 4:00 (over 15 mph).  I know I was going slightly downhill but I didn’t care, I felt like I was willing myself to move that fast!

At least I stopped for this shot

I kept going at a solid clip and made it back home at exactly 20.5 miles, having averaged 14.3 mph for the whole ride.

I felt great but, more importantly, confident that I’d be able to hold my own at the Charlottesville International Trtiathlon in June.

As long as I don’t try to take any photos during the race.

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11 Responses to “Cyclography might just be too hazardous”

  1. Heather C April 5, 2011 at 10:25 am #

    Before I saw the caption I thought “hey that looks like us!” D loves him that Cervelo bike (affectionately referred to as “ceevee”).

    Glad to see there were no cyclography mishaps, pavement isn’t forgiving when you fall from 3-4 feet up (take it from the broken elbow that never healed right over here)!

    • DC Runographer April 5, 2011 at 1:14 pm #

      I was more concerned about the health of my iPhone than myself.

  2. Steve April 5, 2011 at 12:28 pm #

    Nice post and don’t sell yourself short – I think you are a NATURAL cyclographer! Practice makes perfect, but you definitely have the knack for it. Best of luck!

    • DC Runographer April 5, 2011 at 1:15 pm #

      Thanks, Steve! We’ll see how long that habit lasts.

  3. fatDZ April 6, 2011 at 10:52 am #

    Hi DCRunographer!

    Nice to read blogs like yours. 🙂 Keeps me motivated. I am interested in shooting when exercising too, but kinda lazy to bring my iPhone out. I tried shooting in a race for cycling and got myself crashed when I lose control of the bike. Ouch..

  4. Clara April 6, 2011 at 2:48 pm #

    I just had a vision! Runner’s granola! I will make you guys some.

  5. Lauren C April 7, 2011 at 1:47 pm #

    I have found your blog now….muahaha. Don’t act like you don’t enjoy my comments.
    So now that everyone is doing this “biking” thing I feel like i could try it…however, due to the fact that after a leisurely bike ride on a maaaybe 30 year old bike in San Diego caused my buttox to hurt and me to awkwardly try and catch myself (bike was too tall, meh) on my feet numerous times to avoid the cars (watch out for the yellow ones, they don’t stop!) I think I will stick to running. Good luck on your triathlon! Swimming….that’s a whole different story! You’re crazy…I like you, but you’re crazy.

    • DC Runographer April 7, 2011 at 1:52 pm #

      Damn. Foiled again!

      Talk to D, he’ll set you right on a good bike that won’t make your butt hurt. Just try not to shoot too many photos while riding.

      Just watched Old School again last night…that’s still my favorite line.

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