The first ride of the season was a cold one, but a good one. I spent a little time Sunday afternoon, prepping my old steel framed bike. I added a new cyclometer and checked over the mechanics. During lunch today, I tuned my new road shoes to the bike's clipless pedals, then bought new cycling tights a local bike shop. This evening, I loaded the car and headed West for my first ride of the season.
It was a crisp evening to say the least — about 52 degrees as we prepared our bikes in a church parking lot. Sporting my new cycling pants, I was ready for the chill, yet was amazed to see three of the seven riders in our crew wearing only biking shorts. I felt cold just looking at them.
We departed at 6:10pm, aiming East for hills, which was probably good for warming up our bodies. Some of the leaders stayed back with one mountain bike rider, as he couldn't keep pace. Two faster riders headed off the front and out of sight, while we middle riders chugged along in the cool evening air.
Besides a bit of a misadjusted left pedal, I did decently, especially considering I've not been training for 3 weeks. On a few of the hills I was in my lowest granny gear, churning those pedals, making slow progress. But, it was progress nonetheless. I never stopped on a hill even if my speed was turtle-slow.
For a first time out, and a cold outing at that, I felt good about my performance. I rode 19.88 miles in 1:38 minutes (an 11-point-something MPH average). That time even includes stopping for left pedal adjustments and other group members. Not great, but not terrible, all things considered.
Sometimes it's just starting that's the hardest thing to do. :-)