Saturday, April 21, 2012

Spring Tune-Up Wrap-Up...

If this were a normal Spring Tune-Up weekend, I wouldn't be doing the wrap-up until tomorrow evening. But since I'm not going to ride tomorrow, yesterday and today are it. Aren't you glad?

First of all, though, one of my cycling goals for this year is to improve upon the mileage for each month compared to the same month last year. I'm all about visual representation, so here's a graphic to illustrate my success so far:

As you can see, I've managed to ride more miles in every month so far this year compared to last year. And I've still got 9 more days in April. I'm a little concerned already about June and the prospects of riding more than the almost-600 miles I did last June.

Spring Tune-Up Friday

This weekend's ride was located in one of the prettiest parts of our state. Lots of beautiful farmland, many horses, very scenic. The weather, however, didn't cooperate. It was misting Friday morning when we left, and it never warmed up sufficiently for me to take my jacket off. It wasn't miserably cold, and the sun eventually came out toward the end of the day, but it wasn't the picture-perfect spring weather we typically have for this ride.

We rode 61 miles on Friday. The highlight (?) of the day came after several of us stopped on the side of the road to see a cow that may or may not have either just given birth or been about to give birth. Witnesses gave conflicting accounts of the situation. There was a mama cow with some ... stuff ... hanging out of her nether regions, and she was licking a tiny calf that was very unsteady on its feet. Someone said that calf was tagged, though, and she was about to give birth. I didn't stay to watch, for one reason I thought she deserved some dignity, and for another I didn't see why she would be licking a young calf if she was about to give birth herself. Wouldn't she have her mind on other things? I was convinced the birth had already happened.

At the next rest stop, the conversation (argument?) continued. Someone asked if we had seen the birth, and we said we saw her licking the calf, but that was all. One of the eye witnesses said, "No, not that one. The one that came out of the BACK end!" Our resident cop/cyclist piped up and said, "I think they ALL come out the back. Just so you know." If I had been drinking at the time, I can't say for sure I wouldn't have had some fruit punch PowerAde coming out of my nostrils.

This same town has been the location for the Spring Tune-Up ride for several years now. This year, though, they changed up the routes just enough to make it fresh and new. We went to some of the same towns, but the routes we took to get there were different. And just as cycling-friendly.

Spring Tune-Up Saturday

I remember saying on this very blog that if my beloved Gym Dogs didn't make the Super Six this afternoon, I was going to ride the century ride, because I wouldn't have any time constraints. I didn't mean to lie, I promise. Rozmo wasn't interested in riding the century, and while I have ridden a century mostly by myself before, I wasn't crazy about doing it today. My legs weren't interested in riding 100 miles either. So Rozmo and I stayed together, and when we got back our mileage was 68 miles. We can't have THAT. So we went on down the road past the end of the route for a mile and turned around and came back, giving us a total of 70 miles.

We stopped for a few minutes at a lovely garden beside the road. Actually it was more like several gardens, and a work of art. There was an old shed-type structure, and several flower gardens and herb gardens. They were meticulously kept and while I'm not typically a garden-type person (I would really like to be, but I'm afraid that gene skipped me), I was intrigued with the cleverness and the beauty of these gardens. I forgot my camera today, but I took several pictures with my phone. I'll try to post those (and any pictures from Friday that turn out decently) when I'm not quite so fatigued.

It looks like we did the same ride both days, but you might notice we went south and east on Friday, and today we went north and west.

I wouldn't have known that if I hadn't looked at the maps side-by-side. I'm observant and cognizant of my surroundings that way.

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