Monday, May 23, 2011

Throwing Us a Curve

My Dad once gave me some very sage advice when he said, "Kid, always be ready to improvise." Since I would never be a Boy Scout, it took on a more personal tone than, "Always be prepared," and, as a jazz musician, I could take it literally or apply it figuratively. It was advice that has served me well and so, as the weather in this region has pushed many endurance athletes indoors for extended periods this Spring, it is advice I've had to apply to my training. Most of us in the Northeast have had to re-think and revise our training or risk losing recent gains.

I won't bore anyone with the sets and reps I've been doing. Suffice it to say that I switched to an extra week of strength training, focusing on leg drive and core work.

Before the past week-and-a-half 's complete washout, I did manage to get out and log more base miles before my impromptu Tour de Rhody. While I was riding, it suddenly occurred to me that while I am always jealous of the wide shoulders shown on the roads of the Pedal Pushers' blog, we here in the Northeast have something Texans have very little of... that would be water.

As the greenery is starting to replace the brown here, I decided to take a couple more pictures of the Blackstone River Bikeway.
You first get a glimpse of the power of the river at the first rest area.

A highway overpass at about the 6 mile mark. Cyclists cross the river on the lower bridge.
A cyclist just crossed the lower bridge.

One of the larger mills. The river is between the tree line and the building.
This bridge is my turn-around point at 8.5 miles. Great place to stop.

When the sun finally broke through Sunday, I did what many other dedicated amateur athletes do... I went to the baseball game. One of my sisters-in-law (I have six) gave me and my husband tickets to the Sunday night game at Fenway Park. It was an early birthday present to me.

This game was between the Chicago Cubs and the Boston Red Sox. As I was born in Wrigleyville, right down the street from Wrigley Field and was raised in the 'burbs, I grew up as an avid Cub fan. After I married and re-settled in Boston, it seemed highly unlikely that the Cubs would ever play against the Red Sox except in a re-match of the 1918 World Series. Therefore, it seemed completely harmless to become loyal to the local Sox. As an added bonus, I realized I had some things in common with Red Sox fans:
  • We both dislike the White Sox
  • We both dislike New York (Cubs against the Mets, Boston against the Yankees)
  • We both hadn't won a World Series since the Mesozoic era
  • Both teams play in historic old parks
Until the last couple of years of inter-league play, it's been easy to keep my alliances with both teams.

Sunday night, we met up with my husband's brother and one of his sister's husbands (commonly referred to in our family as my brother 'out-law'). I had my hands full catching flak from the boys as I was now cheering on the Red Sox instead of the Cubs, but it's very hard to follow the Cubbies while living in New England and so I stayed local with my loyalties instead of jumping on the visitor's bandwagon. Truth be told, it was "no-lose" situation for me that night.

In the end, it was a chilly evening but rain-free.  A round of beer was replaced by a round of hot chocolate and, as you can tell by the picture below with the warning sign of watching out for foul balls and flying bats, we had great seats.
Sitting in row 5

There are signs that the weather is about to change. I would expect that we will see Spring for oh, about 3 hours until the temps start to move into the 80's and 90's. Still, it will be nice to finally be able to ditch the thermal underwear for a few weeks.

1 comment:

  1. We have returned from our two week vacation to northern California and the Grand Canyon. I have finally caught up on your great posts.

    Enjoyed the above pictures and article. Laughed WITH you while reading your racing article. Never give up.

    Blogspot has decided that I don't have any blogs that I follow. Will have to load the blogs back in looks like.

    We are still on the run. Will try to log in later and review your articles again.