Sunday, August 9, 2009
I finally finished the Tour de France. Duh, not the actual ride - but watching it. I had heard that the last stage, heading in to Paris on the Champs Elysees was a cruise, and that the Yellow Jersey was never threatened. Although I agree that the Yellow Jersey wasn't challenged, the last 50 km at over 50 kph is not the definition of 'cruise' that I was thinking of.
That's a monster 3 weeks of riding that is quite impressive to complete. I was impressed by the old man finishing 3rd in the GC, and I was happy to see Thor win the Green Jersey - although I'd have liked to have seen him take it by more than 13 points (he only won it by 10). Also, I'll note that I was impressed by the White Jersey winner, and his second place overall - I look forward to seeing Andy Schlek in future Tours de France.
As for my own cycle riding, the Thursday before camping, I went out on my normal ride (26 miles), but pushed it too fast too soon. After only about 9 miles I bonked. I stopped to try to get some energy back, and was weak and shaky. Thank goodness I had a Clif Shot with me. That lessened the shakes significantly, and gave me enough energy to ride the 9 miles back to the car.
On a happier note, I went on a ride today, and tried much harder to pace my energy output. Wow. A much much better ride. Doing mostly cruising and a few short, light intervals before hitting the climbs allowed the engine to warm up, but didn't drain the gas tank. I was able to attack all the climbs, and didn't bonk. With the climbs behind me, I raised the pace on the last 3rd of the ride on mostly flats for some extra burn in the legs and hopefully to build up more strength and stamina - if not dexterity and agility.