AM: 6 Miles Easy Run
PM: SMACK DOWN RIDE
Lunch time crew, Myself, Paddy, Kev G, and Dan M. We changed things up, not necessarily for the better (sorry dan). Rather than just loop Houghtons pond Dan took us on an adjacent trail that looped further out and down onto the old rt. 128 which is now over grown and barely able to take humans let alone cars. Its still awesome though. Anyway, when we hit the top of the trail its a sharp decent down onto the defunct road. I like trail running as much as the next fella but this was dangerous. I felt like I should be attached to a climbing rope such was the amount of loose rock and jagged points. I could envision falling and breaking my ankle. Not good thoughts to have! Overall however the run was A+ with lots of music talk (sorry Pat) and even some disagreements. I found out that Kevin hates Depeche Mode and New Order, and pretty much Nu Wave. This doesn't please Kelrock. The conversation will be continued tomorrow.......As for my knee? I'd give the pain in my right knee 3/10, left knee 7/10, left calf (compensating) 7/10. The numbers aren't good but lets be honest, I haven't run truly free of injury since 2001, with the exception of 6 freaky months in 2003 when I thought I was over injuries. A broken back in the fall put paid to those silly thoughts. I'll take moderate pain and the ability to run every day such is my love for this simple activity.
In the PM I did my first Smack Down ride of the year and it was so joyful. I joined in for a Smack Down last year. The ride is in memory of a guy named Mark Nicholson. Last summer he died after a long and very brave battle with brain cancer. I only rode with Mark one time and he never mentioned the fact that he was dying. I'd never have guessed as we rode laps of the Blvd and he gave me advice and helpful tips about training. He told me I should join them on their Tuesday night group rides. When I decided to partake I found out he had just passed. In his memory the team have continued the tradition and every Tuesday during the summer months they ride his loop as a workout with 4 sprint points and a long hill climb for a KOM. The Smack Down is basically the most fun I have on a bike even though I've only done it twice. Its hard to get there from work but I have to make the effort. The guys are great and no one has ego. The ride heads out to the North Providence countryside and they have sprint lines at various points. All banter stops when the first sprint starts to approach, everyone gets cagey and into position. I was loving it, the sprints, the adrenalin, the burn. I took some of the sprints however I wasn't sure where they ended and often went too early on my effort. Its hard trying to balance being the new guy and trying to be nice but coming across like a tough guy (something I'm not). I apologized for my poor handling skills and the impetuous nature of my riding. I will be doing as many of these as I can this year, although I miss next week.
Quick music buzz. I got a new album tonight by Tesla Boy called Modern Thrills. Its new wave and synth pop, just for Kevin Gray! Its very poppy and along the lines of Cut Copy, Nightwaves, Fred Falke, even Empire Of The Sun. The kind of music that is joyful and makes me want to dance around my apartment. It will accompany me on many a bike ride. Maybe my mood is happier tonight?
Peace and Love,