Sunday, November 7, 2010

It's always surprising just how quickly fitness fades

Only one month ago was the previous long weekend (don't despair - there's another public holiday this week, Remembrance Day) & between stuffing myself with turkey & other Thanksgiving goodness I managed four good rides - including that epic Jumpingpound/Cox Hill combo.  Most of that fitness seems to have gone.  Maybe it was the cooler air, but my lungs were screaming as I climbed up to the top of the Prospector loop this afternoon.  I was annoyed at having to sit in the granny ring for much of the climbing - but pleased to clear that tricky steep bit just before the climb flattens out in the middle. 

After turning at the top, it wasn't long before a big grin was back on my face.  I wasn't riding particularly well, but that trail is just so much fun I couldn't help smiling.  Quickly I had a little bit more flow back in my riding.  As I was by myself, I avoided most of the more difficult trail features (some of them seem to have changed a bit - one I looked at & just couldn't believe I'd managed to talk myself in to riding off/down it, let alone not crashed & burned) & simply enjoyed being out in the sunshine with a bone dry trail under wheel (I was going to write tyre, but now my spelling is getting confused & I couldn't decide if tire was better or not). 

This little ride was also notable for the groups I met.  Near the start I came across two guys carrying rather large crossbows who were quite keen on knowing if I had ever seen any sheep up this way.  I hadn't, I thought sheep lived on golf courses in New Zealand.  As I rolled on to the biggest feature at the top I was mobbed by a pack of eight dogs - the two guys with them tried calling them off with some degree of success.  Still, it was somewhat unnerving to have a dog running up my escape ramp (I'm never going to attempt that gap) to the right.  After the Pennsylvanian & Kenyan dog attack incidents, I'm not all that keen on packs of barking dogs - but I escaped unharmed.

Back home Megan, Finnian & I went exploring the riverside walking path upstream as far as it would go in the relative warmth (I still think it should be a lot less than 10ÂșC in early November).  Megan for some reason had a hankering for poutine & I'm not one to discourage such things, so we grabbed some of that artery-clogging-pleasure on the way back.  After stumbling on that video this morning, I've just wasted too much time watching trail videos of rides I did in California & Utah last year.  This skiing caper best be good (when it arrives) or else I'm going to go spare in anticipation.

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