Bike MS training update #8: A rainy dam(n) loop

Chalk up another eventful weekend training for the 2012 Bike MS: Pedal to the Point in northern Ohio. It’s a month away! If you’re able, please consider supporting my participation by making a donation to the MS Society.

On Saturday, my husband and I attended a hands-on baking rye bread class at Whole Foods Market downtown. It started at 10 am so in order to get in a training ride, I headed out at 7 am. It was a great morning for a ride and after 32 miles I ended up downtown. This week I purchased a new helmet, my first super nice bike helmet. The airflow and weight difference were amazing. My supportive husband met me at Whole Foods with a change of clothes so that I could attend class in normal clothes rather than spandex.

Waiting at Whole Foods in my new helmet

Me and my rye bread

On Sunday we had some friends visit from out of town and we planned to meet them for a lunch date. I wanted to leave early enough to ride 65 – 70 miles before we met for lunch at 12:30. Once again, I headed out at 7 am. I knew we were due to get some wind out of the south so I decided to ride a dam loop which puts the headwind early and a tailwind on the way home. I ride Parmer Lane, Anderson Mill, 620 (past Lake Travis), Bee Cave Rd, and Loop 360 for my dam loop. There was a chance of rain according to the forecast but no rain on the radar when I left.

A dreary morning but a great view

The start of the Mansfield Dam

I didn’t get a picture of riding next to the dam itself due to speed and the attention necessary for a safe ride at that point, but you can see a nice ariel view of the dam and bridge on the LCRA website.

Poor low Lake Travis

After my first rest stop at mile 37 I realized that there was no way I was going to avoid being rained on. I could just see the cloudiness and rain to the east. Very soon after, I was drenched. The initial down pour was fairly heavy. The worst part was the rain drops in the eyes affecting my vision. I pulled over and sat under a bank drive through while the rain subsided. I was not the only cyclist I saw out in the rain. After that point it only rained lightly on me a few more times, but the road were wet everywhere. Luckily there was no thunder and not really any extra wind. Because the dam loop is quite hilly, I had to be extra cautious to make sure that I could stop if needed. Road bike brakes are pretty bad in wet conditions. I was able to make it through my training ride in time to dry and clean my dirty self for lunch, putting me at 68 miles Sunday for a grand total of 100 for the weekend and 150 for the week.

Stay tuned for next week’s update where I travel to a new and exotic locale for some bike training.

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