Saturday, May 30, 2009


I discovered a few things tonight that carry over from the bike to the kayak.

One is core stability. I've been focusing on that with Pilates, and presumably benefiting on the bike although I'm not exactly aware of it. While paddling the kayak if you really focus, you can find that power in the core muscles.

Another is form. There are times I focus on form on the bike -- when I'm working hard and trying to distract myself; when I'm doing a light effort and can spend extra energy on perfect form; when I'm going up a hill and need to use the muscles in concert and entirety. Focus on paddling form, and you get the same benefits.

The third is cadence. All my paddling has been light lately - recreational - just out enjoying the water. I've been expending my aerobic energy running and cycling. Tonight I had a little to spare, and somehow I found my rhythm. The cadence that's in my head threads from bike to run to paddle, and when I get on it, I hit a zone that smoothes all irregularities and just feels right. I heard it and felt it, and the wind and water gave me no resistance as I built that momentum gliding on the water.

Pictures of the sunset with kayak, and Graveline boat ramp after sunset.
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Saturday, May 23, 2009

Longleaf Trace - 81 miles

Last Saturday I rode the entire Longleaf Trace, just over 40 miles out and 40 miles back, all the way from USM gateway to Prentiss. That was an all-time mileage record for me. The miles were not hard - I could have done another 20 pretty easily, so I'm confident I'll do a few centuries this year. The rain was a bit of a challenge. We got soaked several times. This was a club ride so I was one of many in a pack of red jerseys. We made pretty good time but stopped many times for breaks, flats, etc. I really enjoyed the ride and intend to go back again next month. It's a very pleasant and painless way to get 80 miles in, and the scenery is great.