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Training Log Archive: PG

In the 7 days ending Dec 11, 2018:

activity # timemileskm+ft
  biking - dark blue bike8 11:58:33 149.96(4:47) 241.34(2:59) 4445
  Total8 11:58:33 149.96(4:47) 241.34(2:59) 4445
averages - weight:139.7lbs

» now

Tuesday Dec 11, 2018 #

11 AM

biking - dark blue bike 7:00 intensity: (54 @1) + (6:06 @2) 1.45 mi (4:50 / mi) +6ft 4:48 / mi
ahr:109 max:119 weight:140lbs

Down to South Main Street....


biking - dark blue bike (orienteering) 13:27 intensity: (3:57 @1) + (9:30 @2) 0.7 mi (19:12 / mi) +2ft 19:09 / mi
ahr:102 max:116

Ah, such foolishness.... :-)

I figured there couldn't be a better place to celebrate reaching 5,000 than the one and only Mike's Maze, in the process doing my first corn maze bike orienteering. Perhaps the first ever corn maze bike orienteering? Also, perhaps the last ever corn maze bike orienteering?

But it was there and it had to be done.

Got out the sprint map from this year's champs, I'd had 10:50 I think. I figured the last thing I wanted was to be clipped in, so I put on a pair of running shoes because that seemed easier than changing pedals. And got set to go.

The maze, well, like me, it's not as young as it used to be. More precisely, it's old and it's showing its age. But there is still a maze. Of course there were no controls out, and a couple of times that would have been really helpful, but you deal with what's there.

Sunny day, light wind, upper 20s, beautiful. Except it would have been a lot better had it been cloudy, though I didn't realize this until I was in the maze.

Started off, moving nicely to #1, the ground was frozen hard, except where it wasn't. And in those places, where the ground was a dark brown, the top layer must have gotten enough sun that it had thawed and there was now a layer of rather gooey mud on top. With zero traction. Sure made things interesting.

Got to #1 OK, hit the button on my Garmin to take splits, on to #2. Got there, determined that I had stopped my watch at #1 and that I was now actually at #3.

Bummer in 2 ways. Thought for a moment. Decided -- because it was my party and I was making the rules -- that the only thing to do was a do-over. Headed back to the start outside the maze. Got there, deleted the data from the Garmin. Hey, if it's not on the Garmin, it never happened, right?

OK, started off again. Seemed as every minute went by there was more mud. Seemed like riding a bike in this stuff was rather difficult (and thank goodness I wasn't clipped in). Seemed like riding a bike in a maze and trying to orienteer was some combination of difficult and insane. And imagine if there had been, say, the 50 or so folks we get for the corn maze champs all in the maze at once, on bikes.

Nope, corn maze bike orienteering is not going to catch on. But for this one time, well, it seemed just right. Made the 5,000. And I was smiling before, during, and after. And didn't even mind the half hour it took afterwards to clean the mud off the bike (it went down a couple of times, though I didn't.

And I finished the course.... :-)


biking - dark blue bike 8:03 intensity: (2:22 @1) + (5:41 @2) 1.51 mi (5:20 / mi) +44ft 5:11 / mi
ahr:102 max:123

And then back home. So nice to get out orienteering in December....


1 PM

biking - dark blue bike 1:42:19 intensity: (6:02 @1) + (1:35:18 @2) + (59 @3) 20.58 mi (4:58 / mi) +263ft 4:55 / mi
ahr:113 max:134

Had a little something to eat and then out for another ride, take advantage of the good weather. Didn't feel any need to work hard, so I didn't.

Thought I'd visit area where I made my first O' map, actually two little maps, done in either 1975 or 1976, can't remember. Lower Mill River and then Upper Mill River. Got used a couple of times, but I honestly can't remember any details. Black and white, that was the standard back then. Things sure have changed.

So went to North Amherst, then the Mill River Rec Area, then the main trail heading up through both areas. Hadn't been there for quite a few years, but not much has changed. I'll have to see if I can find a copy of the maps.

On the way back saw Gail, still heading out on the Zigzag, so I joined her, figured she'd like the company and so would I, just had to make sure we didn't run into each other. Which we didn't. Very pleasant, then a little before home I branched off to go get a photo of the maze. Yup, looks just like me, old, battered, shrunken.... :-)

Still supposed to be really good weather (for December) for a few more days.


Monday Dec 10, 2018 #

10 AM

biking - dark blue bike 1:24:07 intensity: (41 @1) + (54:45 @2) + (28:41 @3) 20.59 mi (4:05 / mi) +341ft 4:01 / mi
ahr:126 max:147 weight:140lbs

Low 30s, N 10, sunny. To Turners Falls and back along the river. Getting used to these temps, didn't even feel cold when the wind was in my face. :-)

On the other hand, seems I can't do math any more. Was aiming for 4,999...


Sunday Dec 9, 2018 #

11 AM

biking - dark blue bike 1:52:02 intensity: (41 @1) + (46:22 @2) + (1:00:53 @3) + (4:06 @4) 18.17 mi (6:10 / mi) +1670ft 5:40 / mi
ahr:132 max:159 weight:140lbs

So yesterday I contemplated an attempt with the bike, of course, on Mt. Grace. But put it off to another day.

That turned out to be today.

Promised Gail I would behave myself, ie. not do anything stupid, though I suppose just starting this outing was stupid. But I've always felt that I have at least some common sense. I remember one time long ago with a group of runners, we were doing a traverse of the Presidential's, south to north, midsummer, and the weather was not good. Got up somewhere near Eisenhower and the rain started coming down harder and the wind getting stronger and the temperature dropping, and I stopped and said I was going back, this was crazy. Talked the others into too. As it happened, someone died up there that day.

And so today I was totally ready to turn back if conditions called for. Not the weather, specifically, though this time of year any accident that limits your mobility can get very serious, very quickly. Just because of the cold.

Started from Northfield, just to make a proper climb of it. Felt OK on the half-hour climb up the Warwick road, then circled around to the east side of Mt. Grace and headed up the access road. There was snow in the woods in places, and I had no idea what the jeep trail to the tower would be like.

First obstacle was the gate, nothing you could get under or through, easy to climb over but not so easy with a bike. There was a stile on one side, also easy to climb over, and then lots of barbed wire and electric fencing. Took a bit of figuring to determine the best way to get the bike over, eventually sort of swung it up and around and over everything. Time to start climbing.

And there was snow on the road, sporadically at first. Very old snow, crusty, a little icy sometimes, sometimes smooth, sometimes footprints had chopped it up. Made it a couple hundred yards, hit the first bit of snow and under the rules for the day, if there was any doubt, get off before you fall off.

A break at this point, off came the booties, figured I might have to do a bunch of walking, no point in trashing them, plus less traction. Walked not much, back on the bike, working my way up. Probably got off a couple more times for short bits, but generally making good progress until I was about 300' below the summit.

At this point the road got a little steeper, and there was definitely more snow, very little bare ground now, plus a little more ice. Well, time to walk a bit. And so I walked. And walked some more, And walked some more, trying to remember where the ice was (black ice, had melted and refrozen, the worst kind, no grip at all). Took a while. And then maybe 100 yards before the tower, back on the bike as the road flattened out.

Took the obligatory photo (evidence), climbed the tower. easy to see Monadnock, Quabbin, Toby, but there was a lot of haze, so no sign of Wachusett, or Greylock, or the southern Green Mountains. Or, I suppose, Pomeroy... :-)

Beautiful day, the haze notwithstanding, sun and clouds, low 30s, S 5-10.

Back down the tower. And then back down the road, which was mostly a pain in the ass, hanging onto to the brakes, feet unclipped, never knew what the bike would do, trying to not take any chances.

Once more past the gate, gave the bike a better swing this time (first time the rear wheel dropped onto a piece of barbed wire, and I figured that wasn't the smartest thing).

Back on with the booties, around to the west side of the mountain and then six miles of downhill. Maybe I'm getting acclimated, wasn't even cold, though I was pedaling all the way down to generate a little heat.

Fine outing. As good as it gets these days.


Saturday Dec 8, 2018 #

1 PM

biking - dark blue bike 1:14:36 intensity: (55 @1) + (42:28 @2) + (30:43 @3) + (30 @4) 17.73 mi (4:12 / mi) +440ft 4:07 / mi
ahr:126 max:153 weight:140lbs

I thought about doing 51 miles today, get the 5K done in case I croaked tonight. That thought lasted about 10 seconds.

But I did get out, well, had to, because the weather continues to be good for early December and I have to take advantage of the opportunities. Upper 20s, NW 10-15, sunny. Not really balmy, certainly not toasty, but it could be a whole lot worse. And will be. But not today.

What I really wanted to do was explore Mt. Grace up in Warwick, explore in this case meaning see if I could make it up to the top. I think I've only been up once, it was the halfway point in a 50K trail run that Fred put on a couple of times a long time ago. I never ran the race, but I ran the course once while training for a 100-miler.

Anyway, that course went up Mt. Grace following the telephone line cut, and that was a climb I couldn't run then, and surely couldn't bike now. But there is a jeep road that goes up to the top, where there used to be an active fire lookout tower, and I've never been up that. So exploring Mt. Grace means riding up to Warwick from Northfield, to get properly warmed up, and then seeing how far I could get up it. And then, depending on much I could do on my bike, figure out if was willing to hike-a-bike what was left.

And today would have been an OK day for it. Except my legs had been tired yesterday, and I didn't really want to do it with tired legs.

So today was a non-demanding ride around the valley. And the legs felt OK. So, who knows, maybe tomorrow, supposed to be in the mid-30s, balmy.


Friday Dec 7, 2018 #

12 PM

biking - dark blue bike 1:42:00 intensity: (7:28 @1) + (1:29:40 @2) + (4:52 @3) 18.33 mi (5:34 / mi) +495ft 5:26 / mi
ahr:112 max:138 weight:139.5lbs

About 30, NW 10-15, sunny. Old roads north of Quabbin, figured there would be good protection from the wind, and generally there was.

Though no protection from stupidity. One of my favorite sayings is "Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most." Certainly in evidence today. Drove over there, got all my stuff set go and then discovered that I seemed to have forgotten my bike.

Well, it was a nice day, still plenty of time, so back home, got the bike, back to Quabbin. Headed off, this time fortunately it only took a couple of minutes before I realized I didn't have my pack (with camera and binoculars). Back to the car....

The rest was fine. Slow going, sandy places, gravelly places, lots of sticks down, a little bit of ice. And not much oomph in the legs. But that didn't really matter because I wasn't in a hurry. Lots of stops. I was out for pretty close to three hours, and warm enough the whole time.

The reservoir is as high as I've seen it.


Thursday Dec 6, 2018 #

1 PM

biking - dark blue bike 1:50:56 intensity: (1:32 @1) + (1:14:45 @2) + (34:21 @3) + (18 @4) 27.02 mi (4:06 / mi) +598ft 4:01 / mi
ahr:124 max:153 weight:139.5lbs

Executive summary -- it's time for a nap.

Mid-30s, SW 5-10. Another day with no reason not to go out for a while, so out it was, a north-south oriented loop with a few hills and lots of flats.

Legs seemed a little tired to start, but after a while things felt better and the miles kept going by easily. Until about the last 15 minutes, when I guess I just got tired. Didn't have far to go, but the message was clear -- you've already gone far enough. Glad I wasn't still 10 miles (or more) from home.

Anyway, time for a nap... :-)


Getting close, fortunately.

Wednesday Dec 5, 2018 #


I think it's time to get in touch with a major donor to MF1 to see if she might also step up for MF2.

Since her circumstances have changed a bit since then, the approach will have to change too.

A seance is planned for this evening... :-)

Note: I would normally not have a clue about seances and such things, but I just read Circe, and I have some ideas...

12 PM

biking - dark blue bike 1:44:03 intensity: (1:33 @1) + (1:25:29 @2) + (17:01 @3) 23.88 mi (4:21 / mi) +586ft 4:15 / mi
ahr:122 max:145 weight:139lbs

Another fine day for outside activities. Managed to visit a few spots I hadn't been before and get slightly confused (lost?) at least twice. And on the way back to my car, when my hands were starting to let me know that they were getting rather cold, I couldn't resist a detour, just to see where a bike path went that I hadn't been on.

All of these things -- new places, confusion, spontaneous exploration (though not perhaps the cold hands) -- are good, signs that the outing had a bit of adventure to it. Just what I like.

Cold, about 30, but wind was light and there was some sunshine. A little cold on the face at times, but the face seems to be able to tolerate such things rather well.

From the malls on the bike path to and thru Northampton, then Leeds and almost Haydenville before I turned back. Got confused the first time in Look Park, I'd only been by there coming the other direction, missed the turn to the bike path, took a different bit of pavement that led to a parking area and then to decent dirt trail that looked like it might have been the route of an old trolley line. But before long it petered out, just single track.

Kept going, of course. :-)

On a steep side slope. I really was paying attention, as falling would probably have put me in the stream down below, but my skills were up to the challenge and shortly I was back on pavement. And a little while later back on the bike path.

And a little while later, confused again, as the bike path just ended, a big mound of dirt blocking the way forward, a newly paved little side trail offering an exit. I was sure I'd been through there this summer with Phil, but who knows, nothing to do but take the exit and head back to the car.

A side trip on the way back to visit the VA Hospital in Leeds, which was certainly big enough to be a mountain, given that Mt. Pollux is one, but it doesn't have a name, so I guess it doesn't count. Meandered around a bit on top, and then shot back down the hill. From then on my hands were no longer warm.

But it was a good ride, and in December you take what you can get. Best get in the miles while the weather is good.


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