Bike training: June 6th & 7th

My bike training updates will skip weeks here and there¬†due to a bunch of travel I have coming up, but I definitely will fill you in when I get out to ride! On June 6th I rode 66 miles mostly east from home, on a lovely day. It was my first really hot ride of the season, and the last ten miles or so were rough. I was beginning to get heat exhaustion, based on the goose bumps I had while riding and my red face when I got home. Our cooler than normal spring hasn’t helped me acclimate to our typical level of heat. Regardless, the ride was nice and I was able to average 16.4 mph.

On Sunday June 7th, I rode 32.5 miles in an out and back route on loop 360 to get in some hill training. My GoPro has been having battery issues and it immediately turned off on my Sunday ride so I wasn’t able to get any photos ūüė¶

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Not too far from home, some sort of horse competition arena. No idea what those things are really called.

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It always makes me sad to see dogs in the middle of country roads.

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Railroad bridge with debris from flooding underneath. 

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Railroad tracks along the road

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Littig road is one of my favorites to ride out east

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Bridge hidden in the trees

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Old farmhouse

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Intersection of Hog Eye Rd and Ingrid Dr. Hi Ingrid!

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Pretty views

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So many old cemeteries, this one is Littig Cemetery

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I believe this is a dog racing track, with the long skinny pens

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Another cemetery, this one in Manda TX.

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The old Manda schoolhouse, now a community center.

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Best country church ever, the New Sweden Church

Bike training May 30 – 31: 2015 Atlas Ride!

For the fifth year in a row, I rode the Atlas ride, the kickoff ride for the Texas 4000. The Texas 4000 is a 70 day bike ride from Austin to Anchorage undertaken by approximately 70 UT students. Texas 4000 cultivates student leaders and engages communities in the fight against cancer. They share hope, knowledge and charity in the fight against cancer through their  4,000+ mile bike ride from Austin to Anchorage. The students can take one of three routes: Ozarks, Sierra, or Rockies.

This year, the ride was part of my training plan for the Rock’N Hot Bike MS Ride I plan to undertake in September. I like this ride because it goes from Austin north (often with a tailwind) to Lampasas and ends at a winery.

At the start of the ride, this year’s Texas 4000 riders line up in front of the group with alumni from previous years behind them.

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Starting line

it was a beautiful day for a ride. It started out cloudy with some chance of rain but that quickly transitioned to sunny skies. The temperature was pleasant and while the winds were slightly out of the north, they were light. For the first 18 miles I was in a pace group averaging 19 mpg. Shortly after one of the riders behind me crashed, I decided to hang back and let them lose me so I could ride by myself. Well, that and the crazy pace they were taking up the hills was a bit too much after a while.

White yuccas along the side of the road

White yuccas along the side of the road

Blue skies

Blue skies with some dark clouds along the horizon that sort of resembled a mountain range in the distance.

New bridge on the left, old bridge on the right

New bridge on the left, old bridge on the right

Toppa Joppa Too Ranch

Toppa Joppa Too Ranch

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Lots of white yuccas along a small road

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Big sky country

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Coming into Burnet, little church

Old shack on a private ranch road we got to ride on

Old shack on a private ranch road 

Private ranch road

Private ranch road

Horse and a fuzzy donkey

Horse and a fuzzy donkey

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More ranch road. This was the best part of the ride. No traffic. Hardly even other cyclists. Beautiful views and perfect weather.

The ride end was moved this year from the Texas Legato Winery to a park in Lampasas due to the heavy rains we’ve been receiving. The last mile of this ride is always the hardest, no matter the distance. People can sponsor signs of their friends and family that have or had cancer. I try to read each sign and it always makes me tear up. It really underscores the great fundraising work these UT students are doing on their ride to Alaska.

In Lampasas

In Lampasas, one of the in memory / in honor signs

Little cheering squad at the finish

Little cheering squad at the finish

I rode 68 miles in this year’s Atlas ride.

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This year’s ending was at a fun little sculpture park

On Sunday, I rode out Parmer Lane for a 34 miles total. Not much new to see, but Brushy Creek Park was definitely flooded!

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Brushy creek, east side of Parmer

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West side of Parmer