Sunday, January 1, 2012

This is Why I Ride

Tis the season to be jolly, ride-a-bike, and be happy!
Here we are, it's that wonderful time of year, Christmas, the birth of our Lord, and fun times with family. School is on break, people have time off from work, so what are they doing with it? Maybe last minute shopping, or nothing at all. Well over at Canyon Velo, in the Cycling world, several of us have been making good use of our precious time off. The week before Christmas, on Monday it was a century ride to south Orange county and back through Santiago Canyon. While we were going through Laguna Hills, we started talking about all the riding we should be doing this winter break. I happened to mention doing a ride to San Diego and everyone wanted to do the ride. So we did! It was a great ride and a beautiful day for riding! Then on Friday we rode down the Santa Ana River Trail to Sunset Beach for breakfast and back. I got about 70 miles from that. Saturday of course is the club ride. By mid week I realized I could put in 400 miles this week, so Saturday I finished my week off with a 90 mile ride. 
Christmas week was a little lower key for me. I mostly did shorter 25-35 mile rides. But Bob had the idea to do a "Long Steady Distance" fat burner ride. We rode down to the end of Camp Pendleton and Back through the OC. That was a long day. We didn't hammer, just a steady pace. It was over 7 hours in the saddle, plus 2 more hours of stop lights and short breaks. I haven't spent that much time on the bike in a long time. 
Thursday the club rode down to San Clemente again, but I didn't have time that day. 
Saturday we reaffirmed a bicycle term. As cyclists that race and ride and train hard, we never do a slow ride, only a Relaxed pace ride. That's what we did Saturday. And we really enjoyed it. We were able to enjoy the scenery through live oak Canyon, and some of the fastest riders noticed homes and landmarks they'd never seen before. 
Racing bikes is great, it's filled with adrenaline, excitement, goals and rewards. It motivates us and for many the driving force to ride bikes. But for me and many others I'm sure, it's these long relaxed, scenic rides, with my friends, second family from Canyon Velo that I enjoy the most. Call it a reward for training hard for races that allows us the enjoyment of these great rides.
That's why I ride!

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