Saturday, July 15, 2006

How much I'm riding, part II

My first week has passed having my own office at UOIT (meaning a safe place to store the bike and drape wet cycling gear etc etc). I thought I'd give a status report of how much riding I'm doing, because I think I'm still guilty of giving the impression that I'm doing 68km in the morning AND evening to get to and from Oshawa.
I'm not.
The pattern this week, and this will probably be true until winter, is that I'm cycling to Oshawa in the morning, and then biking and using the Go Train to get back into Toronto in the afternoon. All together, that gives me about 90km on my bike computer each day. I simply don't have the fitness level to do the round trip ride each day, plus, the ride back to Toronto is a bit more uphill, and tends to have headwinds, and it takes FAR too long (i.e. over 3 hours).

So that's my riding report. Here's some fun stuff.
I found a really cool e-card site at Global Fair Trade.

They have awesome ecards that you can send, like these ones (click on image to enlarge).


At some point I'm going to tell some bike accident stories, and I want to explain the Tour de France to people reading this who don't follow the Tour, but for the moment, here's a "why I love cycling" note.
In the evenings I get off the Go Train at Danforth Station, bike down Main Street and turn right onto Kingston Road to begin my bike home through Toronto. As soon as you make this right turn onto Kingston Road you're going 30km an hour (assuming you're on a road/touring bike). Kingston Road just soooaaarrrsss downhill almost all the way to Dundas Street, a distance of maybe 1.5 or 2 km.
Now, Kingston Road is two lanes going each way, but at 6:00pm when I'm on it each right side lane allows parking. What I invariably have when I'm going 37km an hour down Kingston Road is a line of parked cars on my right, cars and streetcar tracks on my left.
Considering how heavy the traffic is, the condition of the streets, the narrowness of the "chute" between cars that I'm surfing, a speed in the high 30's is actually unsafe.
But, a long sloping downhill and 37km / hr without barely pedalling are soooo hard to resist. Passing cars like they're barely moving (actually, they are barely moving), your senses on hyper alert waiting for car doors to open, making sudden adjustments to avoid broken glass, your legs sensing opportunities for more speed and forcing the pedals around harder..., all together it is an incredible rush.
Biking isn't easy... besides the big things (headwinds, rain etc), little things like your helmet chin strap scraping sweatsalt under your jaw can annoy the hell out of you, but at the best of times, on a summer evening, when your legs feel strong and you're soaring downhill and your day of work is done and you're almost home, well, biking is just so much fun.

6 comments:

Melissa said...

I just brought my bike to my apartment in an attempt to take it places more often. I walk to school everyday. I never get a parking pass because that way I have to walk everyday. lol. Thank you for the birthday wishes, but they are a bit earlier. Birthday isn't until the 1st. I just was mentioning it to remind everyone. And also to rub it in the face of a cheating ex that I was going to the show with someone else. lol, yes, I'm totally serious.

Dramalish said...

Hi Tuco,
I was laughing like crazy when I found your post on my blog. Yes, infertility blogs talk a lot about "cycling," heehee!

I'm going to mention your blog in my next post, if that's ok. It's just too funny to ignore the mix-up.
:)

-D.

Dramalish said...

Hi Tuco,
I was laughing like crazy when I found your post on my blog. Yes, infertility blogs talk a lot about "cycling," heehee!

I'm going to mention your blog in my next post, if that's ok. It's just too funny to ignore the mix-up.
:)

-D.

Dramalish said...

Hi Tuco,
I was laughing like crazy when I found your post on my blog. Yes, infertility blogs talk a lot about "cycling," heehee!

I'm going to mention your blog in my next post, if that's ok. It's just too funny to ignore the mix-up.
:)

-D.

iNGRiD said...

That Ridin' Dirtay song reminds me of you.

Silly Sally said...

Hey Tuco,

Thanks for your comment on my blog. Great to see that you're commuting to work by bike. I used to do that every day too for a while, but not the distance that you're doing! But then I used to add distance when I got home, so would often end up with 3 hours of cycling every day. Cycling fanatic. Don't know how you get around traffic the way you do, but I too love getting out past Scarborough. Incredible how many rolling hills there are in Stouffville and Durham! Good luck with your experiment. Tell Annalise that her Buddha Belly is Beautiful.