After stocking up on Clif Bars the night before, I embarked on a bike ride of known length but unspecified difficulty. I’ve been doing my 10 mile round trip commuting to and from UA on a nearly daily basis, but I wasn’t too sure where my fitness beyond that stood. Also making me a little nervous was a gigantic hill that I’d ridden in the past which has always completely kicked my ass. That would be near the beginning of this days ride…

It went really well. On two occasions I stopped for about a 5 minute break, but I think that was a result of my trying to keep too great a pace. I was passing people on really cool bikes who were dressed like Lance Armstrong the whole time, maybe that should have been a signal I was riding an unsustainable clip. So, the last few miles of the uphill portion were pretty slow but overall I’m happy with how it went. Next time I’ll probably try something in the 30-mile range.

Time: 1:07:57
Distance: 17.2 miles
Avg. Speed: 15.2 mph

I was surfing the net for an easy way to make the above elevation profile and came across which looks really cool. I have tons of navigation tools for use in my truck, but that all revolves around having a GPS with you and making a log of the route. The MMR site has some typical tools, but you can use it without having any route data – you just click around on the map where you went (it even follows the contour of the roads automatically and such).

You can check out the map of the route there by clicking on the link below. A fun to do there is figure out how many calories you would have burned if you did this ride as, say, a 600-pound man in 15 minutes… the answer is shocking!

View Interactive Map on

Things I learned…

  • Can’t sustain pace of 5-ish mile daily commute ride for much longer than that…
  • Backpacks for any longer than that are a BAD idea.
  • No need to carry the huge amount of water I did around town. Must have ridden by 50 gas stations and stores. 2 cage bottles is probably more than enough in town where supply replenishment is everywhere.