Better late than never.
As I mentioned, on Sunday, September 29th, DJ and I did a 32 mile bike ride on the north shore of Long Island to benefit the Guide Dog Foundation.
Going into it I was a bit nervous as I hadn’t been on my bike in months. Yes, I do spin twice a week, and while it helps, it’s definitely not the same. In the weeks leading up to the ride I had also just been feeling eh overall. I was tired all the time and just couldn’t seem to find the energy to do much of anything.
I was quite happy when my spin class on Saturday (before the ride) felt good. I felt like my energy levels and cardiovascular stamina were finally back. So leaving class on Saturday, I was encouraged and a bit more optimistic about the ride.
The start time for the 32 miler was 9:30a, but since we live a bit of a ways away, we had to make a 7:30a ferry, which meant leaving the house by 7. We were running late and it was touch and go, but thankfully we made it.
I love the ferry. On a nice day it’s a great way to get from CT to Long Island. Unfortunately taking a car on it is quite pricey, but sometimes you’ve just got to do it.
We got to the ride and checked in. Then we parked the car and suited up. Of course I go to hop on my bike and the seat is insanely high and we don’t have any tools. Figures. Thankfully we found another rider with an allen wrench and the situation was remedied.
We got to the start a couple minutes after the 9:30a/32 mile group had left, so we rushed a bit to catch up. DJ is all about speed and i’m admittedly slow, so he sped up to the front of the group and I brought up the rear.
My personal victory was that on the longer hills I passed almost everyone and ended up at the front. Of course as soon as we were flat or on the downhill, I ended up back in the rear. Climbing is my strength, speed is not. But it felt good to be good at something.
DJ stayed with the group until the first rest stop and then took off on his own as we were too slow for him. Having not ridden in a while, I was more than happy to stay with the group.
The first stop was around mile 14 and at that point I felt great. It was a nondescript stop in a parking lot with snacks and drinks.
The second rest stop is at a very north point on the island. I’d say it was at mile 22 or so. It’s beautiful!
I took a self photo at this stop. I look dumb in a helmet. So many people look all hard-core biker. I just look silly. I have a big head and I blame that. 🙂
After the second rest stop we were in the home stretch, only about 10 miles to go. Of course of this last stretch, i’d say about 70% of it was uphill, including one or two quite tough hills. At this point I was pretty tired. But I persevered and finished. Hooray!
By the end of the ride I was totally spent! To review the ride, I’d say I felt great for the first 15, good for the next 12, and then so-so/tired for the last 5. Not too bad for someone who hadn’t done any riding in ages.
After the ride we packed up the car and headed back towards the ferry. But first we made a stop at John Harvard’s for some pumpkin beer. When I lived on Long Island, this was our go-to spot each fall. While I don’t care for pumpkin, I do like a good pumpkin beer.
This hit the spot like you would not believe. They serve it with a cinnamon/sugar rim. The ideal sip (for me) has a bit of the sugar and a nice swig of beer. It was so good and because it was football Sunday, it was only $3! 🙂
From there we headed to Port Jefferson (where the ferry is) and parked the car. We planned to watch the rest of the Giants game and hang out for a bit before heading home. Well, the Giants played so horribly that we left the bar, picked up a pizza, and made an earlier ferry.
I don’t think it’s possible for me to ride the ferry without taking a photo.
It was a wonderful day but I was happy to be home sitting on the couch and relaxing. And then it was time for Homeland. Great end to a wonderful day!