I had a great ride this morning – leaving the house at 5:45 am. I have not done that in a while and it felt great. I read Bill Strickland’s Bicycling magazine blog about early morning rides and it inspired me to head out for 31 miles this morning.
Anne and I then reminisced about the last big ride I did – across Pennsylvania in 1999. Back then I did not want my training to interfere with family time (Chris was 6 and Nancy was 3) so I often went out in the early morning. I drove to work at 4:30 am and left for a 20 mile loop around Horseshoe Curve near Altoona, PA. I would go up the back side of the hill and then ride down the steep, forested hill. The light was dim because of the early hour and the canopy of trees. I would ride through the tunnel of Horse Curve and come out above the reservoir into the blinding sunrise – always an exhilarating rush both from the ride and seeing the burst of sunshine.
My work did not have a shower, so I put my Peace Corps experience to use and took a true bucket bath. I stood in a washtub in a stall in the men’s room and used a cup to dump water from a bucket over me. Yes, I got a few comments, but it got me in shape for that ride . . . and clean for a day of work!