What a gorgeous day for a ride considering we’re knocking on December’s door.
Late yesterday was the first time my legs have felt up to doing anything after my recovery ride on Friday. My legs have been an absolute wreck since Friday afternoon. Hamstrings all tied up in knots, quads all inflamed, and both painful to boot. Legs hadn’t felt that knackered in quite a while.
I saw John’s ride posted on the GVC web-site and started sending out feelers to see if anyone was interested. Thankfully Mark chimed in that he would go if I decided to go and that was all the motivation I needed. Recruited a few more riders to meet up at Anthem Hills Park for a pre-ride down to Pebble Marketplace.
I left the house expecting to be complete wreck considering the state of my legs. I was pleasantly surprised I wasn’t hurting while trying to put power down. Along the way to the park I had a few decent climbs which worked wonders to loosen me up. Made good time and arrived a little earlier than expected so I did a couple laps around the park to keep warm. Thankfully I didn’t have to wait long for Mark to roll up followed by Mike and finally the proverbially late Kenny.
The ride started easily enough. Pretty much just cruised while catching up with everyone. Talked UNLV football with Ivan and Joe. chatted about the friendly skies with Mike. John and I spotted a family of three coyotes on the north side of Wetlands Park before crossing the bridge.
After the Wetlands bridge is where I started coming to life I guess. John and I had been co-leading, but I surged ahead to allow some other trail users to pass by. Then after crossing the bridge I rolled into that slight downhill section and I fell into a complete flow state until making the turn north. I was really enjoying that section and just happy to be out and riding in such a beautiful landscape.
After turning north, Joe rolled up next to me and we rode side by side until the turn onto Owens. Took the time to have a nice chat with him while maintaining a decent pace, nothing too crazy, solid Z2 type stuff. Not sure what happened, but I lost him, and much of the rest of the group, after making the right onto Owens. After that I was kinda all alone until stopping at the Green Valley Grocery at Lake Mead Blvd. Stopped for a regroup, restroom, and refuel before the climb over to Lake Mead.
Rolling out of Green Valley Grocery, honestly, I took off because I knew I wanted to really hit the Lake Mead climb hard and didn’t want to be passing anyone along the way. Road is narrow enough as it is and having two, or more, cyclists side-by-side only makes it worse. Mission accomplished as I set PRs for nearly every segment from the stop to the guard shack.
We regrouped at the guard shack to get everyone through the gate, and I pretty much picked up where I’d left off. Pulled out in front and tried to set a solid consistent pace for everyone else to latch on to. I think it went well and even had Joe swing around once or twice to take a pull as we made our way through the NRA. Ended up with another PR for the climb up to Lakeshore and tore off after regrouping at the guard shack as we left Lake Mead.
Had a great climb up to the Lake Mead summit but no PR this time and I’m ok with that. More than happy with the effort I put in on this climb as well as the others before it. Normally I don’t consider myself a climber, but I’ve been getting better bit-by-bit. Was out in front and right as we got to the Terrible’s at Athens, Kenny and Joe pulled up. Guess the two of them were on a mission to chase me down and seemed pretty happy to have done it.
After our final rest stop at Terrible’s, I stripped off my vest and we started back. I pulled up in front, but settled down some so we could stick together in a nice group. Along Warm Springs, Joe came around a few times to get me a welcome break. The climb up Gibson went great as well as the short ride across American Pacific.
Working our way over to Valle Verde our small group of four which had set off from Anthem Hills Park made the decision to continue south along Valle Verde versus returning to Pebble Marketplace. At this point I was still feeling strong, but dialed it way down for the final miles back. Had a great chat with the boys as we slowly but surely lost riders as they peeled off to ride home.
Can’t stress how surprised I am with this ride. With how my legs have been feeling the past two days I honestly expected to do horribly. Would have been perfectly happy to do my best to latch on to a wheel for a free ride. Oddly, the exact opposite proved true. I was feeling really good and strong for the entire ride, again, surprising even myself.
0.19 new miles — From Wandrer.earth
Give your activities the names they deserve. – by Bandok.com
Sunny-Sunny, 42°F-58°F, Feels like 43°F-59°F, Humidity 53%-28%, Wind WSW 3mph-NNE 2mph – by Klimat.app
— myWindsock Report —
Weather Impact: 2.4%
Headwind: 29% @ 2.9-6.4mph
Longest Headwind: 48m 45s
Air Speed: 16.7mph
Precip: 0% @ 0 Inch/hr
— END –
Max elevation: 3089 ft
Min elevation: 1293 ft
Total climbing: 4043 ft
Total descent: -4008 ft
Average speed: 19.32 mi/h
Average cadence: 83 RPM
Average heart rate: 138 BPM
Average temperature: 55.94 °F
Total time: 05:11:26
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