I have always seen road bikes as superfluous and silly, the toy of transport for the self-indulgent– those who ride for exercise, sport, and speed, with little interest in practicality. Continue reading “Seduced by Speed”
Some randonneurs maintain brevet fitness throughout the year, but I haven’t managed to achieve that. When September arrives, I ride for fun, and run myself into shape for a fall marathon or two.
Winter weather tempers my riding ambitions. It’s just not as glorious to ride around the countryside through various shades of winter browns and grays while hands and feet throb in protest.
With a March marathon behind me, and the calendar noting of the arrival of spring, I was out of excuses for not riding long. Felkerino and I agreed that if we were serious about riding brevets this year, then a long-ish tandem ride was in order. Continue reading “Riding in Search of Weak Spots”
After a month spent in delightful lollygag mode, Felkerino and I pumped up the tires on the Co-Motion Java tandem for our first century ride of 2015.
As I rode along looking alternately at Felkerino’s backside and a somewhat snotty top tube resulting from my runny nose, I was wholly grateful for the hours and miles together on our beautiful, sturdy, and maybe somewhat dirty, tandem. Continue reading “Bikes Are Not Family Members, But…”
As part of our preparation for an upcoming two weeks of summer bike touring in Colorado and to maintain the bicycling fitness we developed over the course of the brevets, Felkerino and I have spent the past two weekends doing back-to-back Saturday and Sunday rides.
This is not so difficult to do in June, where days have tended toward toasty but not scorching with pleasantly dry air. Continue reading “Maintaining the Base: Weekend Back-to-Backs”
With temperatures soaring up to 60 degrees this Sunday after a week that could scarcely creep above freezing, it was impossible not to heed the call of the road.
Happy Thanksgiving, everybody, and thank you for reading Chasing Mailboxes. Continue reading Giving Thanks for Good Friends, Bike Rides, and Coffeeneuring
This past weekend Felkerino and I put our bikes on the roof of our car and drove north to meet up with friends and attend the Philadelphia Bike Expo.
Taking the topic away from coffeeneuring for a moment, I wanted to post some thoughts about three separate, yet interrelated, topics: lions; tigers; and bears. Or really: how I spent my furlough days, the impact of the furlough on the fall event plans, and my marathon taper. It also gives me an opportunity to post some of the many photos I took during that time.
We sort of interrupt the Coffeeneuring Challenge for a couple of ride reports.
I say sort of because Sunday’s ride included coffeeneuring. My 87-mile Tuesday Fun-Odyssey also included coffeeneuring, but my documentation is questionable thus, did the coffeeneuring even happen? You tell me.
100 Rainy Miles for Coffeeneuring
This weekend Felkerino and I craved an escape from the city so we ventured out to do a century in horse country Virginia.
Day Four of the government shutdown and for the second consecutive day I called on my Excepted Intermittent Bike Friday Tikit. It was cowering in a corner, licking its wounds from yesterday’s century, trying to be invisible. No doubt I had ruined some trust between us.
“Tikit, you gotta give me another chance,” I said in what I hoped was a cajoling tone. “Today will not be like yesterday, I promise.”
Having designated all of my bicycles “Excepted Intermittent,” they are all required to help me with any “excepted” rides I might perform. Today, I called on my Bike Friday Tikit to assist me with such a ride.
I departed my house around 10:30, figuring that my Tikit and I would ride out a ways on the C&O Towpath and then make a U-turn when I felt like it was time.
Initially my Tikit was happy as a lark to be out. We wandered by closed monuments together and over to the C&O.
To help manage my shutdown anxiety I have spent the last couple of days away from the television, the computer, and the depressing barricaded and closed areas of downtown.
I’m also trying to get in some exercise. After all, I want my work clothes to still fit when this $%&! is over.
Today I took a little bike trip on the Leesburg Loop: the C&O out to White’s Ferry; over the Potomac via a ferry ride; roads to Leesburg; W&OD Trail; Custis Trail; and home.
Over the weekend Felkerino and I meandered from home to do what we call the “Leesburg Loop,” a 90-ish mile ride that starts in D.C., crosses the river into Virginia and takes the Custis and W&OD Trails to Leesburg, winds around to White’s Ferry for a quick ferry ride across the Potomac into Maryland, continues on roads near Poolesville, and returns to D.C. via Potomac, Maryland and MacArthur Boulevard.
Our ride was filled with various stops, including a first-time visit to Bikes@Vienna. This shop is located two blocks off the W&OD Trail in Vienna, Virginia, and is a treasure trove of interesting bicycles.
Sunday was a perfect day to be a bike rider. Since Felkerino and I consider ourselves bike riders, we went outside and rode our bike most of the day.
We departed from the District and steadily made our way north past the Lincoln Memorial, through Georgetown, and out to Maryland.
Like many people in this town, I work in an office environment Monday through Friday. I spend lots of time in front of a computer or sitting in meetings. Lots. For over 40 hours each week, I sit. And sit. And sit.
To compensate for my largely sedentary work life I bike commute, pepper in midday runs, hit the gym, and go post-work whatevering when I can. These brief bursts of activity help me feel more balanced about my office job and less guilty about sitting in my desk chair.