26 December 2010


5 Time
of Day
12:30 PM
Distance 59 miles Power  
Time Total – 3:11
Moving – 2:59
Speed Overall – 18.6 mph
Moving – 19.8 mph
2020 ft Max Speed
Elevation – 3463 ft
Breakfast 10:00 AM - 2 x (egg cheese bake and cinnamon delight), orange juice
Workout Food 2 bottles of Cytomax, Clif Bar
Workout Type endurance +
Weather 60 to start, mid 50s at the end, sun to start, clouds at the end, light wind to start, harder wind at the end
Equipment Road Bike
Clothing bib shorts, knee warmers, Craft short sleeve undershirt, short sleeve jersey, arm warmers, cap

New roads! No rain! No gloves! Some sun!

The price I had to pay for all this was riding through the massive urban sprawl that is Las Vegas. Shelley and I are visiting her sister/brother in law/nephew here.

I had my iPod with so at first the roads were no big deal. Even the shoulder of a gross highway can be tolerable when you are new to the neighborhood and don't have to ride it all the time. And because it was the day after Christmas and a weekend the traffic was not so heavy.

I was riding into a mild headwind pretty much from the start. Heading west was the worst. In the beginning when I was still chipper my speed hovered around 17-18 mph turning the 53x19 but as I got out onto Hwy 160 I was going 15 mph. When the road tipped up my speed would hit 11. When I turned off onto Hwy 150 that goes to Red Rock the wind got stronger and I was hating it. My late start meant the clouds were starting to roll over the mountains and I did not want to get stuck out here if rain came or I got too tired. I decided the prudent thing to do was turn around.

What a difference! Suddenly I'm doing 32 mph easy and then I'm doing 35. As I got back on Hwy 160 I was pretty much always going 33-36 mph rolling the 53x13 and occasionally the 12. What a relief.

Coming back on St Rose Parkway I got sick of blasting along with traffic and decided to hit the bike path. What a trip. Mostly the path is wide and smooth but at several points it just ends. And turns to gravel. I'm flying along at 30+ mph and had to relax my grip a bit on the bars to not bite it. Luckily the gravel sections are not too long and 40 or 50 later the pavement starts back up again but how bizarre. This path is obviously not a finished product.

Some other interesting features of this 'path' were that at some intersections the path would just end at the curb. No ramp or taper or anything. Once I flew off the curb and once I almost crushed my front wheel because I did not see the curb as early as I would have liked when getting back on the path.

At intersections there were also poles in the asphalt, to keep cars and dirt bikes off the path I guess. The poles were close enough that a motorcycle handlebar could not fit through but a bike could. Just. My heart rate did increase a few beats as I threaded the needle again and again.

I'm bummed I did not get to Red Rock! But that wind tired me out. The entire ride was flat or a 1% incline or decline. I was really looking forward to getting out of the saddle for a bit or just feeling a real incline.

But it was SO nice not to need gloves. I hate gloves... more than I realized. Even wearing them to keep warm is no fun. Obviously I have issues. And it was fun not to have to confront them today. :)

I was not hammering along today but when I finished it felt like I had not rested much at all while I was out there. I was either fighting the wind or going fast. I got lucky and did not need to wait for many lights and pretty much kept the effort on most of the ride. Three solid hours in other words.

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