Moonlight Ramble

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Saturday was kind of a wacky day.  I had originally planned up getting up and hitting the road by 5:30 a.m. and *thought* I could knock out 14 miles and be back home by 9 a.m. and have an hour before karate.  Well …my car had been acting up and by Friday night had gotten my full attention so I needed to get it into the shop by 8 a.m. on Sat so …. I woke up a little before 3 a.m. and hit the road to knock out those 14 miles and still be home in time to get my car in the shop!

Originally Planned Route

Originally Planned Route

The reality is shown below….

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Do you see that arrow?  That’s me walking up and down the street looking between houses to find one without a fence at 3:30 in the morning so I could cut across a field and get back home ASAP …

As you can tell from the Average Speed (3.3 mph) I was barely walking let alone jogging but, I initially figured it was a long route and I would eventually kick in with some running (never happened).  I was in bed by 10:30 the night before so I got 3 sleep cycles (a sleep cycle is about 90 minutes long) but, I’m thinking 5 sleep cycles would have been better plus, the last meal I had was around noon the previous day since I had to work after that and by the time I got home it was too late to eat.

I did get a nice scale shot the other day – my first dip into the 240’s since the last week of my contest back in April!  🙂

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If nothing else, I did prove to myself that I can get up early and head out the door.  3 a.m. is pretty ridiculous though.  It is what it is.  For the most part, I felt like a phone with a 3% charge left on it.

I did make karate at 10 a.m. and sensei said something kind of interesting at the end of the workout.  He gave a lot of examples which all centered around the notion that if you had a fire that you wanted to put out then you wouldn’t pour gasoline on it, would you?  Of course not.  But, in the realm of human behavior, we generally don’t want to be mad or angry but often times when we are angry or upset – instead of working to put that fire out, we keep adding gasoline to the fire brewing in our mind instead of taking some control and doing something constructive to put it out.

This reminded me of some of the philosophy stuff I’d written about previously, the stuff from Nikolai Berdyaev who mentioned that living the good life is frequently dull, flat and commonplace.  I tend to think that is most true with people who don’t have many aspirations in life in which case I imagine any excitement would be welcome to at least add some texture to an otherwise drab existence.

Start of the Moonlight Ramble

Start of the Moonlight Ramble

Instead of starting a block or more behind the starting line, I did what I did at the Tour de Belleville and started a block ahead of the starting line and, once again, saved over an hour of my life by not having to wait to get started 🙂  The Moonlight Ramble is a ride and not a race so, there are no timing bibs.  The picture shows the very first riders (behind other people standing and waiting to jump in, same as me).  Those are the premier or elite riders and they pay a little extra to start at the very front.  I waited for all those speed demons to pass on by then jumped in myself.  🙂

I gotta admit, my legs were still pretty tired and, for the most part are perpetually sore from all the running so I did something I’ve never done before and that was to take the short route.  Something I noticed being in the first wave of riders is that there aren’t any fun or goofy riders.  The pics below should help explain what I mean by that.

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Every year is a little different route than the year before and this year’s route was very different.  We actually crossed over two highways and at the split between the long and short route was a big sign used in highway construction to indicate the split.  I was tempted to take the long route but the short route proved to be very, very interesting for me.  Most riders, especially in the first wave that I was riding in opted to take the long route but, I could see a dozen or so riders making the turn to take the shorter route.  I quickly passed most of the other riders until I came upon a couple and chatted with them a bit while we were grinding out an uphill incline.  Once that flattened out thought – I kicked it up into about 22nd gear and starting pumping those legs and easily pulled out ahead of them.  I never did see them again.  In fact, I didn’t see anybody, I was riding completely alone and there was nobody else ahead of me.  At one point when I think I was supposed to turn, a cop was yelling at some driver so I think I missed my turn there and then I was semi lost but figured I was only a couple blocks South of where I needed to be.  I took a guess on one of the roads and hoped it would take me back where I needed to be and it did.  I was actually the very first person to finish the short route of this years Moonlight Ramble 🙂

Short & Long Route

Short & Long Route

My Route

My Route

I had my earbuds tucked into my shirt while I was talking with the other riders but, once I was alone I put one back in and had Stevie Wonder was playing then and that helped me kick up the pace a bit.  I maintained a pace over 16 mph for the last 3 miles of the race.

Things are a lot different at the finish when you’re the first one there ….

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