I came home from work today, jumped on the bike, and rode for a good two hours.
Don't get the wrong idea. It certainly wasn't any kind of "training" or "fitness" ride. It's funny, I suppose, but ALL my rides these days would best be categorized as "recovery rides". For those not familiar with the training language, a recovery ride is one in which the racer rides steady and slower than normal after a particularly hard workout or series of workouts. Recovery rides are intended to promote circulation and muscle recovery. You might say I'm always recovering from something, but I reckon it is rarely a particularly hard workout.
No, I came home from work with an unsettled stomach, low on energy, and hungry. Still mulling-over a few things at work, I simply wanted to sit in the sun and rest...or maybe take a nap. It wasn't the ideal set-up for cycling. On the other hand, the weather was spectacular and I had some spare time. Within minutes, I had loaded the bag with a PBJ sandwich, a windbreaker, camera, cell phone...and was on the road.
Not feeling very zippy, Waide Road seemed like the best plan. Noodling along on late afternoon gravel was just the ticket. Miles of quiet. No cars...and no hurry. Springtime had worked it's magic on the wide-open rolling prairie. The multi-shades-of-brown illustrated in my prior Waide Road post were transformed. Wildflowers and multi-shades-of-green were featured today. Unfortunately, my camera battery gave out mid-ride and I couldn't photograph the best views.
Upon returning to the final stretch of pavement, I noticed the sun dropping behind the horizon. I paused to turn on the lights for the last 10 minutes of the ride. It really is amazing what a two hour ride (and eating a PBJ sandwich on a prairie hilltop where you can see for miles and hear nothing but the breeze) can do.
It can recover your spirit.