Today I had a kid-free morning because of Opening Day baseball and took advantage of it by taking Oscar out for a spin. The weather forecast was foreboding but I thought about the days that we used to ride out in the middle of the night to "chase the Humboldt storms at the beach." I've been feeling a but stir crazy lately and really needed an all-out speed fest (granted, my speed fests aren't like real roadies' speed but it's good enough for me).
I decided to give the heart rate monitor a try, too, to see if it's something that would be beneficial. I'm borrowing it from a friend at the moment. I've struggled with figuring out how much to eat because I always seem to be starving, even after a quick trip to drop off the kids a couple miles away. I thought that if I could accurately gauge how many calories I'm burning, I might to a better job of replacing just what I need and not going totally overboard (mmmm, spoonfuls of peanut butter...).
I always forget how fast I am when I'm not weighed down by an 80+ pound bike with 80+ pounds of kid-cargo. It was like I was flying. In no time, I was down the ARP and passing other riders. I decided to just go out a reasonable distance and not overdo it but I was shocked to see that my "little" outing was an hour and a half and I had burned 980 calories. That certainly puts things into perspective.
My favorite part of the ride was that it was so simple. The weather was gloomy but the rain held off. The trail wasn't empty but it was quiet and peaceful. I saw a jackrabbit, squirrels, a turkey, and a black-tailed deer. The poppies were in full bloom and looked electric against the grey sky. At one point, I reached to grab my camera but then thought I'd rather just take the moment to enjoy the scenery and not worry about stopping to capture them. It was all mine to soak-in and enjoy.
Oscar was really up to the job today although I need to tighten his shifting before he's ready to sell. He is certainly going to make another rider very happy, one who can appreciate his attitude and let him ride wildly more often than I can.