I'm tired, whether from exertion or from getting up well before the crack of dawn. We all need miles for Fall plans, so Pat, Dave and I met at 6.00 for a brisk early morning 50, I so I could get home for family doings and Pat the same. I left around 5.30 to get a warmup in (and to rival Dave who always gets a few more miles than I do). They were both at the Loop when I arrived and we hit it, using Eastern Pkwy to link up southward towards Iroquois and our first hills. I set a firm tempo up Iroquois in the pitch dark, glad to have my SON lighting my way. Excellent choice there. We circled around the back of Iroquois where Pat pipped me at the top of the disc golf hill; I left just a bit too early on that one. A quick water break led us onto Southern Pkwy and a somewhat big gear roll downtown. I wasn't feel too great, right in between gears if you understand me. I wasn't strong enough for the next cog and burned my legs, but the cog up had me at my limit with my breathing, but thankfully for me we started hitting lights. Unthankfully, we seemed to hit every light on 3rd and Market streets. A quick roll across the stench of Butchertown had us at a road block at Frankfort, apparently for a run/walk down along River Rd, our route. We found that we could use the right lane, and impressively the left lane was full of runners. We then hit Mockingbird Valley hill, me taking a steadier tempo before giving it some more gas at the top up "green" whatever road. I managed to stay ahead of Pat this time, but he was climbing much better than last. We then had a brief stop during which Pat tried to figure out what was up with his front mech, but to no avail. A swoopy downhill in Indian Hills delivered us to the bottom of the traditional Indian Hills climb. I backed off a bit b/c I was tired of blowing at the top of every climb and it worked pretty well. Pat almost got me that time. River Rd allowed us to tempo up a bit, but it started drizzling and gave us a headwind (I think). That set the plate for Wolfpen Branch, during which I tried a little move up on the third portion but overcooked it, with Pat going by me easily. Tired legs. All that was left after that was Barbour Ln. and our last quickie climb. I felt pretty in control for 75% and the last 25% blew up entirely. Again, overcooked it. Gonna have to work on that. We reconvened at the top and cruised by Pat's place and dropped him off. Dave and I were blessed on the return via Westport with a tailwind and downhill, so our tempo increased a fair shake until pulling into St. Matthews where *suddenly* food became necessary. And Plehns was in order to quench said pang. After a donut (2?) we bridged through the park in the later stages before stopping at Twig-n-Leaf for a warm breakfast. Funnily, some long-time LBC members were there hiding from the drizzle. They decided to bag the potentially wet ride. Sissies! The end result was 58 well-earned miles, and all before 10am. That nap is gonna feel spectacular this afternoon!
p.s. In discussing bike usage this morning, Dave and I speculated on which bike(s) I was using more this year, especially between the new IF and the updated Blueridge. As of this ride today, I've taken exactly 22 rides on each bike, with the IF leading the mileage race 721 to 655. Basically the difference is that the IF has 2 centuries this year and the Blueridge none. The bike with the most trips in '11 is the Ute, the neighborhood bike of choice. The bike with the fewest miles is the RB-1, with one trip of 8.5m. Pathetic. Two bikes haven't been ridden, the Redline 9.2.5. and the old C'dale Criterium. I'm going to try and give that to my uncle today to use if he would like. The 9.2.5. needs to be cabled and sold. And perhaps the RB-1 needs anew home too.