Thursday, June 29, 2006

Diminishing Returns

For us who work day shifts, June's long days mark the peak of outdoor training season. July and August may bring warmer days, but the sun will come up a mite later and go down a few minutes earlier with each passing week. On the rare day when I leave work on time, I can get home and go for a 25-mile ride before sunset. By Labor Day, I will have lost nearly an hour of that evening riding time. The same applies to morning rides: If I felt like it, I could get up at 5:30 these days and have enough light to ride. By December, there won't be enough light to ride before or after work, so cycling will be constrained to weekends. Even then I'll have to plan my days carefully to make sure I can ride while it's light and push other errands like grocery shopping into the gloaming.

Any wonder that I'm usually in better riding shape around Tour de France time?

Oh, sure, there are other ways to stay in shape, but none of them are half as much fun as it is to just get out on the road and go.

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