8.10.2007

a mental health day

today I took a mental health day
it was vital
it was esscential
it went pretty much as planned

last night had some thunderstorms
last night also had too much red wine
but neither stopped me from being a good boy and taking my medicine
went out to rosaryville as planned

invited a few people
no one could make it
expanded the offer... no one was interested or available
tried to recruit someone fast, fit, and on a single speed to guide me around the trail
after some emails on the topic
I accepted that rosaryville was not only close but also very moderate in the area of technical
a place that has the rubber stamp of FUN

people have been talking about rosaryville for some time
it has that tone of a great place to take your girlfriend mountain biking feel to it
there are a cast of people that like to ride their mountain bike track bikes there
so I accepted what was in front of me and took it on head on

I headed out to rosaryville solo mid day today
the morning was slow with trying to sneak a few extra Zs after helping the boys get ready for summer camp
when I finally woke there was some work to be done on the bike
work on the bike and gathering of gear
stuff that should have been done last night
but was left till morning as the bottle of red wine of the night was taking priority over the mountain bike ride of the next day

made the drive from downtown dc to upper marlboro with very little traffic
made it to the trailhead in fifty minutes
that fifty minutes includes a trip to wendy;s for a classic single and a chicken sandwich off the dollar menu
a dollar menu that now costs a buck nineteen

had the emails
had seen some posting
had heard some talk
yet I had no idea what to expect

so I suited up in my DCMTB kit and mounted my Jamis Exile 29er Single Speed and dipped into the woods
it was just as people said
it was buff trail
buff trail that road like a pump track
that roller coaster flow that makes mountain biking feel something like skiing
although I am a snowboarder and have yet to ski

the parking lot was vacant when I pulled in aside from one blue volvo with a thule rack
not far into the ride I had that fearful yet anticipated head on encounter at a blind turn
she was spooked by my yeti grunt
we did not lock horns
we exchanged hellos and continued on our cardio way

one lap down and I turned around for a reverse loop
the nine miles went by.... but they did not go by with the snap of the finger
there was some work there
the course is demanding enough to ask of some legs, some lungs, and some serious focus
each turn has the question of how fast it can be taken?
I definitely tried to take it fast

a bit into lap two I encountered the woman from lap one
if I were slamming the keys on the keyboard for penthouse forum the story would go different
but I am typing on my blog
so I passed the same woman on a second lap... this time with two of her less experienced mountain biking friends
again a short hello and a continued focus on maintaining speed and intensity

the day was hot
not quite the bangkok hot of the last few days
more of a standard unbearable heat and humidity which is standard for august in dc
the wind blew through out the ride
but the wind just pushed hot heavy air around
the air was thick
which left me soaked

my water bottle of accelerade was topped off with some red bull
this water bottle was nearly empty mid way through lap two
on lap three I finished it off
while wondering how much water was left in my camelback

the bike, the body, and the fluids held out
to my pleasure there was some ice cold water in the car
three laps at nine miles a piece gave me twenty seven miles of hammering in the heat
I felt okay
but I questioned how I thought I could multiply that by four to complete the Shenandoah Mountain 100

a good day on the bike...
but no real indicator of my level of fitness

I question my choice not to spend my day on the road bike
but I then reflect on the benefits the dirt brought me
riding on dirt is good for my soul
it is also good for my mental health
the gains of the same amount of time on the road do not measure up to what I got from being on dirt

not an issue of REM: Road Equivelancy Miles
but rather the escape from the cars
escape from everything except the dirt under my tires and the ferns at my side
sometimes it is a thoughtless process
other times it is a daydream
then it can also be a concious appreciation

came off the trail feeling good
not as good as I would have been feeling if I were writing this tale for penthouse forum
a good way to spend the day
had wanted to ride earlier in the day
then finish some task around the house
the tasks around the house went undone

got home with time to walk the dog and shower before the boys got home from the park with the babysitter
threw a frozen pizza in the oven before I unloaded the car
pizza was cooking as I showered
the boys ate and I freed the babysitter
we then drove out to northern virginia for an evening showing of Underdog
the movie followed by a stop to watch the planes take off from national airport
we cut through the airport and stopped at the park where people gather for the same experience
watching planes land and watching planes take off
kid were running around
couples were making out

the kids did not fall asleep on the drive home
the kids are asleep now

lisa is away on a girl's weekend
I better finish this entry and this drink and go to bed

a good day
a good day on the bike
that last lap really made it all worth while
great cardio spin on the single speed in a beautiful place on some super fun trails
most definitely headed back to rosaryville
but will try to avoid it with a full parking lot
the blind turns in that place combined with its potential for speed
well... there is a certain hazard potential

thought about tommy of gorrilla on the bike while i was out there
I think he did six or seven laps out there
if I wanted the miles I would ride there and back
it seems doable
through the city
on the shoulder of route four
then find old upper marlboro pike
instead of the main road way



2 comments:

Mrs. Outlaw said...

R-ville is the perfect place to ride a singlespeed. Wish it was closer!

Family Bike Shop said...

Next time hit me up. I'm only 20 mins. from the Rose. And there is the TTF trail to check out there also.