28 July 2011

Bike-commute day 61—to gym and home

Thursday, 28 July 2011.

I lost the opportunity to bike to work this morning, since I had to change a tube at the last moment. (I rode the last couple blocks last night with an ever-softening rear tire. I had pumped it up on my arrival, hopeful that it had miraculously sealed itself. But physics is a constant: the leak had left me with a flat to repair this morning.) So my bike commute today starts with the evening ride, since I carried my bike to work in my van. As I do during the seasons with short days, I'll leave the car at work overnight, and then drive home on the last workday of the week. Which is tomorrow for this week.

At Cardinal Fitness, I had time only for bench presses, cable rows, lat (latissimus) pulldowns, and dumbbell lat raises. And I spoke with Kathy and Jesse, a couple who I had seen attending the appearance of Ira Glass, the host of NPR's This American Life. I mentioned to Kathy that David Sedaris is appearing at the Victoria in October, and she seemed happy to know that tickets are now available. Jesse complained of feeling less enthusiasm, despite changing his routine. We talked about several possible sources of the lack of energy, including suppressed blood pressure, low blood sugar, lack of rest. But we didn't speak of a strong possibility: overtraining.

Back on the commute by 6:20, and planning the evening's dinner, I decided on grilling butterfly pork chops with a citrus rub and thick slices of eggplant drizzled with balsamic vinegar. Sonst nichts, außer'm Brot und Butter—etwas einfaches. First thing when I get home will be to fire up the charcoal, and then I'll have time for a shower by the time it's ready.

Chuck wasn't home yet; I guessed that he was still jabbering with Susan Carpenter, who was in Yellow Springs for the writers' conference. He had planned lunch with her and perhaps a visit with our friend Pat White, if she was at home. I checked for messages that might indicate when he would be home: nothing on paper, on the home phone, or on my cell. So I let Howard-the-Dog out of his self-confinement in the bathroom (he usually has the run of the upstairs and landing, held back from the downstairs by a child-proof gate at the bottom of the stairs), went with him to the deck, where I pulled off my skinsuit and dumped charcoal in a mound in the grill. It'll need only a squirt of fluid and a match to be blazing for dinner. Then I walked Howard to the dog run and coaxed him to give us another brown offering and a watering of the gravel.

Still no Chuck, so I brought Howard in before he could think of attacking the tomato plants for their green fruit and sat at the piano to sight read through a few Bach preludes and fugues from Das wohltemperierte Klavier. After excursions into G minor, A major, and A minor, Chuck interrupted the reading with a quick phone call from the gym. He would be home soon. The evening could start.

Ride conditions
Temperature: 94 to 97°F at 17:15
Precipitation: none Winds: variable 5 to 10 mph from the south, west, and north
Clothing: Skinsuit, ankle socks, open-finger gloves.
Bike: Lotus Legend fixed gear
Time: 00:57:36 for  15.65 miles
Heart rate: 127 bpm HRave, 146 bpm HRmax
Bikeway users: 29 cyclists, 16 pedestrians, 2 dogs
Playback of the ride.

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