Back on the Road

Yesterday, my friend Pete and I got on our bikes and rode the 100-mile route in the annual Tour of Napa Valley. No wine, no pate or cheese or anything like that. Just the bikes, bananas, sports food, and plenty of water. A year ago I was just coming off the ride of a lifetime, the 2003 Paris-Brest-Paris randonee, and kind of took my cycling fitness for granted. I’ve been thinking I’ll do another PBP-length ride (1,200 kilometers, roughly 750 miles, in an 90-hour time limit) next year — the Davis Bike Club’s Gold Rush. But though I finished with no big problems yesterday beyond a sore butt and some minor problems eating, I realized that the year that’s gone by and the 15 or so pounds I’ve gained since PBP has dramatically eroded my strength and that maybe it’s wise not to think too far into the future about huge demanding efforts like a 1,200k ride; even having done one, it’s a huge thing to contemplate.

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