Sunshine Cycle Shop’s long ride

Yesterday I got up at around 7 a.m. to throw on my gear and head over to Sunshine Cycle Shop for the morning ride. It leaves out from the shop on Pleasantburg Drive at 7:45 a.m. and then heads back into some residential and industrial areas before winding through the “country.” I try to make it every Saturday morning I can.

This was the third ride I’ve made since being off the bike for over 10 days. My first ride back was a 25 miler through Cleveland Park. The second one was an over and back of Paris Mountain on Friday evening. Both were hard because I have not yet found my legs. Then, on just a few hours rest, I went out with the shop for what would end up being over 30 miles (including riding to and from the shop form my home). This morning, I am pretty sore!

I’m including this map because there are two options for the ride. One option is a shorter route that covers just around 25 miles. This ride tacks on about 3 to 4 miles extra and includes a long gradual climb that gives you a good workout.

This time out, I swore I wasn’t going to push myself. However, there I was at the point of the first sprint leaving the group to go ahead and reel in a lone breakaway. I caught him and won the sprint – not on speed but with timing. I was feeling pretty good, so I thought maybe this would be a good ride.

On the long hill I mentioned above I decided to try to take another sprint. The problem is, I haven’t ridden this route enough to know where the line is! I got on the train and then near the crest of a portion of the hill, I dropped the group and took out over it. I then kind of slowed down thinking that was the sprint line. Well, there I was kind of taking it easy in the middle of the lane and I hear from behind, “Choose one side of the road or the other. Just don’t ride in the middle.” It was John one of the shop guys and a racer. Seems the sprint wasn’t over! Embarrassed, I got back on the train and finished about fourth at the real sprint line – which is a gas station near the next intersection.

I’m not sure John likes me. 🙂 It is hard for me to start a conversation with him and he has never had much nice to say to me. Not sure what I’ve done. I did apologize for being in the way and let him know I was still learning and wanted to learn. His only response was to repeat, “Just don’t ride in the middle.” Okay, I get the point.