Tuesday, July 08, 2003

This is the first post of my new cycling diary.

I'm in training for my third annual Climb to Kaiser ride - the ride is held the last Saturday in July, in Fresno, California, and includes 155 miles and 13,500 feet of climbing. However, over the past six weeks or so, I've climbed about 20,000 feet less than last year at this time. And while I'm a few miles ahead of last year in overall riding, I'm also about 300 miles behind since the start of June.

It's difficult to suffer the required punishment to finish the C2K - luckily, the Tour de France has just started, and that's providing me with some motivation. On the other hand, I'm spending way too much time watching the Tour on t.v. instead of riding my bike.

Meanwhile, I've got a new, tiny digital camera - I purchased it to take on bike rides. I stuffed it into one of the back pockets on my jersey this afternoon and headed up to Sunset Blvd., then up Sunset Plaza Drive, with its cornucopia of spectacular homes and architectural styles.

The route took me up a few miles and gave me more than 1000 feet of climbing. I had flat tire on the backside of the climb. While I had a spare tube, I forgot to pack my patch kit. It also looked like my front tire had a deep cut - it's time to discard it. So I gingerly finished the ride on my last good tubes, cutting it a bit short.

I finished the ride with 16 miles and more than 1500 feet of climbing. But I didn't pull out the camera for a single picture - I was too immersed in the ride and didn't see any worthy subjects to photograph. The long views, while impressive, where too hazy, but there was a nice view down into Hollywood, including the Capitol Records building.

Trying to use the ride to lose weight, I pretty much kept away from carbohydrates during the day, and I rode out of the house feeling hungry. I took along some gel packs just in case, and while I didn't bonk, I felt listless and weak on the ride (probably due to the lack of carbos as well as a long ride the previous day). The flat tire didn't help my mood, although it was near the end of the climbing.

As of this afternoon, I was a couple of pounds above what I was last year at this time, but I'll probably add back what I lost at dinner.

Now, back to t.v. to watch a re-run of the Tour...

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