Sunday, October 31, 2010

Back in the Saddle

Today started at 6 AM which I think is great considering I'm still suffering from a moderate case of jet lag.  I usually get up around 5 so that means I actally slept in.  I made a steak and cheese omlette and two cups of coffee for breakfast.  I let the dogs out and stood outside for about 5 minutes breathing the morning air.

I wonder, do you think you could tell the season just from the smell of the air?  I think that I could.  In the fall the air smells woodsy to me.  In the summer you can smell the grass.  In the spring, it smells like mud.  In the winter the air is just so dry and crisp.

I haven't been on my bike in a couple weeks and I really missed it.  There is something really great about riding in the fall.  The weather is cool but the days are still long enough to have enough time.  The rides can be more recreational and not centered on mileage, heart rate, intervals, etc. 

Today, I did one of my favorite shorter rides up to the Quabbin Tower.  It is rolling terrain with about a 2 mile steady climb to the top.  On the way, you pass over a large earth dam that usually has families and couples.  At the top their is a lookout with a tower, typically people drive to the top and sit to take in the sights.  You never know who you will see up there.

Today, there were 3 people at the top.  One park ranger sitting eating lunch in his truck and a middle aged couple who told me all about their daughter who does the Lake Placid race.  They are obviously very proud of her. 

On the way home, an older man riding a titanium road bike pulled up next to me and started a conversation.  It is always interesting the people you meet out on a ride.  This man was about 60, very lean, he was wearing and old school wool jersey and knit wool arm warmers.  He asked me what class I raced in, I told him that I was a triathlete and was too afraid to ride in a bike race.  It was clear that even though he was much older, he was much more fit that me.  Basically I drafted him for the next 4 miles until he turned off.  It was nice to have some company for a couple minutes, especially because of the wind.