Sometimes the best run available is a good hard ride

With no triathlons scheduled the rest of the year and a 90 mile run/walk coming up in about a month (due to schedule conflicts we had to move it back to Nov. 9), what was I doing on a 15-mile bike ride Sunday?

Under the circumstances, you’d think a long run would’ve made more sense. I’ve really been wanting to explore the first chunk of what I think of as my eventual neighborhood marathon route. But given that I only had an hour or so to work with, I decided to do it via bike – and wound up with a much tougher workout than I would’ve likely had otherwise.

I figured I could do my planned ride in about an hour, but I hadn’t factored in the wind. It didn’t seem that bad looking at the trees, but when I turned north it was definitely cutting about 4 mph off my expected pace.

Should I cut my ride short? I wasn’t crazy about that. Instead, I resolved to just tough it out and try to make up time on the way back. When I checked my cell phone at the turnaround point, I had about 40 minutes to get back to the house. If I averaged 14 miles an hour, I could do the 7 1/3 return miles in a little over 30 minutes.

I made it in 29. It wasn’t easy, even with the wind at my back; I’m not very fast OR very tough on a bike. But give me a deadline, no matter what the medium, and I’ll usually make it.

It’s funny to think there was a time when I had trouble imagining biking as a good workout. I was completely cooked when I got home. Whereas if I’d gone for a run, I would’ve been all too aware of my time constraints and just trimmed to fit.

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