Tuesday, September 3, 2019

4 Years, Mission Accomplished and D2D 2019

Today is the 4th anniversary of my mother's passing and the 4th anniversary of my retirement from the FAA. It's also the 4th anniversary of a hearing exam that showed I'd regained hearing in my left ear; hearing that I'd completely lost for more than a week and was told by one doctor that I'd never recover. It was the single most emotional day I've ever lived, the way those three significant events intersected at once.

It's been 8 months since Tammy's hip replacement surgery. One of her recovery goals was for us to be able to go to the State Fair and for her to be able to walk pain-free. Mission accomplished! We got to the fair earlier than ever, at 7:00am and didn't leave until Herman's Hermits had finished their show at the Leinie Lodge Bandshell 15 hours later. We had such a nice time.

Here's a link to some Instagram photos and videos from our day.

The Red Eye Memorial is no more. The golf tournament for retired air traffic controllers is more than two decades old but interest has waned in the past few years and Ken has decided to shut it down. 24 of us met last Tuesday for the last time at Fountain Valley Golf Course. Storms chased us off the course for 20 minutes but otherwise, it was a great day to be on the links. Our other tournament, The Sick Leave Open, is still going strong.

The annual Dawn to Dusk ride (in its 23rd year) is in the books and we couldn't have penciled in a better day (weather-wise) for it. The temp and humidity were very comfortable with a mostly cloudy sky and a light tailwind to help us home. Perfect! This was my 2nd year riding this event with the guys from Silver Cycling.

Here's a link to our ride on Strava.

I had some hesitation going into the ride, fearing I didn't have enough long rides to my credit the past few months to carry me through the later miles of Saturday's ride. I did so many more long-distance efforts in preparation for last year's D2D and felt I needed a similar training regimen this year. I was wrong. My longest training ride was 146 miles (235 km) and that was plenty. I'll remember that for next year should I decide to toe the line once again. Plus, I think my Tuesday night gravel rides enhanced my training a lot. I push myself for those 2+ hours more than any other time of the week on my bike.

To be honest, tho, preparation for D2D was a bit of a monkey on my back, never feeling like I'd totally committed to the training and having some quiet doubts about being fit enough for it. And what about the weather on the day of the ride? Will we be fighting a strong headwind on the way home, and will it be stormy? Will I be able to get at least a few hours of sleep the night before the ride? A 4:00 in the morning wakeup isn't what I'm used to anymore. But in the end, it all came together nicely. I rode strong and I learned that I can get by on a lot fewer training miles than I thought. That's good to know when I toy with the idea once again of whether or not to add my name to next year's list of riders.

That's all I've got.

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