Solo "Cop Shop" Rides on April 10 and 12
I was unable to ride with the group this weekend, but didn’t want to miss what would have been my first ride since joining. So today, I did it solo, and then repeated it on Saturday the 12th. It’s a good thing I did, because it's a bit misleading to call it a ride in my case. I had to walk for some of it, especially that last uphill trek—i.e., the one with the nickname I just read online: "The One Mile Ridiculous Killer Climb from Hell," (officially the Alpine Approach Road) that levels off at the “Cop Shop” (officially the New Jersey Headquarters, Palisades Interstate Park Commission, (http://www.njpalisades.org/headquarters.html). If I’d been bringing up the rear I would've been a major drag on the group. Every time I got off my bike to walk up a hill or part of a hill—I did try each time, and only gave up when my thighs just couldn’t take it anymore—I rehearsed responses to Dieter, who I imagine would have been berating me for not riding the whole way. All I can say now is that he would've been completely unsuccessful in shaming me back onto my bike. There's no way I could've taken those hills—yet! Not even with Hot Chip's latest cd playing on Spotify. But when I did the repeat ride, I walked a mile less, so progress is being made!
Looking back on my rather brief cycling history, which began just three months ago, the long rides I did in the Florida Keys this winter seem like cake walks now. I worked my way up from just riding around Key West when I arrived in January, to riding around the entire island every other morning (12.5 miles) to doing a 53 mile ride in 4 hours and 30 minutes up the Keys in late March along the Florida Scenic Highway. They were a breeze compared to the Henry Hudson Drive on the Palisades. Instead of the 10 and 15 miles without so much as a traffic stop, and the whole way, and every last mile of it flat as a pancake—today’s route had many hills (but also spectacular views) and was more of a workout than I’ve ever had. I can see it's going to take me a while to build up the kind of stamina that many riders in the group seem to have. But I am determined. I may not be the least bit competitive about this — but I am ambitious. I will do 100 miles, just maybe not in the six weeks as the training schedule I signed up for.
My final tally according to Moves, the app I use, is that I cycled 29.5 miles in 3:31 hours and walked 3.9 miles in 1:27 hours, for a total distance of 33.4 miles, roughly what the Cue Sheet describes. And on the positive side, I’ve burned 1,650 calories, which is about 95% of my daily allowance on Loose It!