"It never gets any easier. You just go faster." ---Greg Lemond
"Don't buy upgrades. Ride up grades." --- Eddy Merckx
"You drive like shit." ---The Car Whisperer


Don't Lose Your Edge...

All the paceline and path riding with the bike team I've been doing lately has had me missing riding in traffic, I found out this morning.

I left my apartment in Albany Park early to meet up and ride in with a friend who has to be in to work at 8 this morning. My usual route to work is Kedzie and Irving down to Elston, then Courtland to Macy - which runs parallel to Clybourn - to the Goose Island Brewery, where Clybourn opens up quite a bit and I can have a roomy ride down to Division. Then it's over to Orleans, and finally a right on Wells at Chicago, ending up heading east down Hubbard to the Wrigley Building. Here's a taste of it (this is the video I made to recruit my office for last year's "Bike to Work Week"):

She works at Adams and Racine, so after a couple of doppios (maybe you should've stopped with that "dope" Floyd) at the Logan Square Starbucks, we head south to the first leg of the "Cool Kids Route" over to Damen, and take it all the way down to Jackson. I wish I had my camera with me. In fact, I plan on getting a shot of heading east on Jackson at sunset as soon as possible. A wide open, one-way street, and the sun-drenched skyline filling your entire view. It's those moments where I am still amazed that I actually live in this city.

After dropping her off, it was straight into the loop on Madison. Even though it's a full rest day for me it was impossible to resist pacing along with the traffic. Riding through downtown on a solid vintage steel bike gets my heart racing like nothing else. Shooting a narrowing gap between a bus and an Escalade, accelerating with one hand on the down-tube shifters to get to the open blacktop beyond. Using your larynx as a "horn." Belting out a good, hearty "Share the road" to the cager honking behind me.

It just gets my heart rate going and endorphins flowing. It's the only juice I need. And training-wise, it's actually good speed work.

Don't lose your edge. Never pass a chance to ride in traffic.

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