Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Rowing and Biking Weekend

This past weekend was all about having fun in the mornings and obsessing about what to eat for the rest of the time. Friday was a work from home day so I had to wait until my lunch hour to run over to Sandy Run for a quick row. It was pretty hot and very humid. I just rowed up to Fountainhead Park and back for seven miles. Its about all I had time for. After making the turn around at Fountainhead, I saw two firetrucks using their water cannons on the Prince William side. I'm not exactly sure what they were doing - training maybe? But it made for quite a show seeing the large arcs of water. We stuck to our usual Friday night routine and had pizza for dinner.

Saturday I had rowing practice in the morning. The boathouse was a lot quieter than usual as the Women's side was up in Camden competing in US Rowing's Masters Nationals. Our Lightweight 4+ took a 1st place so congratulations to them. I beleive it's the first national Gold medal our club has earned. As for us, after our warm up, we did a Challenge piece, i.e., up the racecourse, did a 180 degree turn and finished back at Sandy Run. The turn went well, but you could feel the power slowly go after we made the turn. We picked it back up as we started a sprint over the last 500 meters, but it shows me that we are in no kind of shape yet for head race season. Although we were also missing two of our strongest rowers so I'm sure that contributed to the feeling of the boat slowing down. On a positive note, the boat is running much smoother these days. The check in the boat is way down especially at the higher stroke rates where we were having a problem. The run is also getting better. It was a gorgeous day to be out on the water. When we launched, the temperature was in the high 60s, no wind, the water was so flat and the sun just coming up over the trees. It definitely made you want to be out on the water. To top it off, there was coffee and donuts waiting for us back at the boathouse when we were done. Not that I'm a coffee drinker, but donuts are always welcome. After the row, Ann went and got us subs for lunch and then had a long discussion concerning the menu for this week. I think like most families, we find ourselves falling into a rut for dinner - having the same things again and again. Some want change, but can't suggest alternative and others don't. We finally managed to hammer out a menu and from that a grocery list. The Son and I left to do the grocery shopping. The grocery store we use most often if currently undergoing a renovation and they have moved everything around. It's a mess and everyone walks around in a daze unable to locate anything. We finally finished up the shopping and The Son headed back to his condo with his loot and I headed back to the house. The Son is actually working again (thank God), but doesn't get his first paycheck until Thursday so we have been supplying him with some food staples. He was back for dinner. We bbqed boneless country pork ribs (are they still ribs is they don't have actual rib bones?) and they were good. We do love some ribs.

Sunday I was up early (6:00 AM) to go for a bike ride. The forecast called for a hot and humid day (welcome to Washington in August) and I wanted to get started before it got too hot. I had already loaded my bike, helmet and bike shoes into the car the night before. I had also taken the laundry down so it was ready to be started as soon as I got up. I was out the door just after 7. I had planned to go a bit further then my usual 20 mile ride to Leesburg, so I headed east from Dulles, rather then west. I rode to Vienna and back, which was 25 miles and then continued past the parking lot for another 2.5 miles and then back to add another 5 miles for a total for 30 for the day. I went early enough that it was a comfortable ride - not hot at all. A lot of people had the same idea as me as the trail was pretty crowded in spots. Mostly with joggers more so then bikers. About 5 miles into the ride my left knee started to really hurt and I thought I would have to call short the ride, but after a few miles the pain went away. Not exactly sure what was up with that. Maybe it just needed some time to loosen up. I love riding on the W&OD Trail. It's scenic and best of all, no cars/trucks so it's safe. The only problem I have with it is the mix of people who use the trail. The trail is used by bikers of varying experience and ages, in-line skaters, joggers and walkers. When you have 4 or 5 fast bikers in tandem coming up from behind on two people walking side by side strolling along with their dogs with traffic coming from the other direction, it creates a situation ripe for disaster. I've only seen a few accidents, but you have to be vigilant and pay attention. Just outside Vienna, I was trailing a dad out with his two small sons. They were under 10 and on small bikes. Obviously they were much slower then most of the bike traffic and for the most part they weren't creating a problem as long as you took the time to pass when clear. A biker coming from the opposite direction yelled at the dad to "keep his kids under control". I thought it the guy was being a bit of a jerk. I didn't see where the kids were creating a problem, but it's the kind of thinking you run into. Although I say the trail was crowded and it was in spots, when you're traveling a stretch of trail that covers 15 miles, there was much of that time where I was utterly alone and I could enjoy the silence and the beauty of the trail. I got home just after 11:30 and The Son came over and cooked a brunch for us, which was appreciated. After eating we settled in to watch the Nationals play. Ann and I fell asleep during the games, but naps are fine on a Sunday. Ann, for dinner, prepared a rotisserie chicken (set it and forget it!), which was moist and delicious. So went my weekend.

1 comment:

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Heavy traffic aside, sounds like a darn good weekend.