Saturday, January 26, 2013

Hilly climbs

Vancouver is something of an interesting city to me (at least from the perspective of someone that grew up in the desert which is relatively flat): the entire western side of the city is peppered with random hills. If you know how to commute around town, this isn't actually a huge issue. But, I was hoping to start training for the "big hill" that is a notorious STP feature.
The particular hill that I opted to tackle is right on Mill Plain off of Grand. Even when I was cycling daily to Portland, this thing was a nightmare. While it doesn't sound like too much, it is around a 500 foot climb over about .1 of a mile. And I am not too proud to say, this thing beat me up (and just being a couple weeks out of smoking, my lungs were in fire). It beat me up good, and like an idiot, I tackled this thing in the middle of my ride. I see it as something of a real goal to be able to make this one without stopping and at something of a brisk pace. I have roughly six months to get ready for STP and I know hitting hills like this one is going to be imperative.
On a more physical note, the daily training on the bike is helping with my quads and my fingers didn't freeze today, which-you know-is a nice bonus. Also, I think I need to see about some new drop bars or at least repositioning my brake levers; their current location is in no way sensible.

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