I checked the distance 28 km..(Then mused abt a 21km + marathon but discarded it and chose my Cycle.)
I was getting bored of my Honda. I had stretched to the limit owing to heel injury.. But Then What the heck
Agey ja kar dekha jayeegaa! Time will tell, why worry.
I messaged My friend Shirkant abt my plans..28 km cycling..at 3PM..He replied that we should see each other at 6PM.
I mentioned casually that I might take a detour. (The plan was to do something a bit crazy than the 28 km cycling.)
Early morning I oiled my Mountain bike cleaned the 6 mths+ dust. It was soon as good as new.
Then I cleaned and greased the bikes of Neel and Mihika. My Gears were still slipping so I went to a cycle shop.
The mechanic was too good and set the gears in just 3 mins. I knew the problem now. It wasn't the cable but the shifter orientation around the tube that was misaligned.
At 3:07 I started pedaling to Katraj. The detour idea was to climb Katraj then pedal via Khed-shivapur then climb Sinhagad ghat col and descend to Donje then to Khanapur.
The sun burned my neck and I had to stop twice in Katraj Ghat for water (Tang). The descent started soon after the tunnel and I took another stop near a shop where I bought two bottles of Nimbuz. One went straight down my throat and brought back life in me.
I kept the other bottle for the Sinhagad ghat.
Just after the Shivapur turn I realized that my legs had started to lock. I got down and squatted to reduce the toggle.
I had forgotten the basic cycling pain. I realized that my thigh muscles were weak and the tautness was causing the issues.
I remembered the old days. I have not cycled for more than 6 months. And even before that I just biked 13 km to work which is routine city cycling. I had chosen a tough target. It was good that I had no option to retreat.
(I had not even calculated the kms to destination as I had a gut feel that it would be 5km +/-. with bit of gradients.)
I had done this route 5 yrs ago and I felt my "age". Or I would rather say..Out of practice.
The very first time I did this route , I had biked continuously with zero rest. Even the steepest parts were not out of range.
Over many years, I had not strained myself enough.
This time I had to get down thrice to push the cycle up the slopes. Pedaling and walking are different feats as the knee angle changes.
The over taut thighs crib and rebel and the knees lock.
I got to the Sinhagad col. The I started the descent. I had to speed up to recover lost time. I chased few bikers and My hands gripped the brakes hard..Even disc brakes were tough to engage. Again..A matter of lost practice.
I biked to Donje and then Khanapur and entered the resort to celebrate the 30 years service party with TATA motors batchmates.
I had clocked 43 kms!!
The proprietor warned me that the water from the cooler was very chilled.
Well! That was what I would have ordered. two glasses went down the throat. The rest went over the shoulders and sizzled.
It was 7PM and the party went on till 2AM on the side of a swimming pool.
Sleep was immediate after effects of downing several pegs of Liquor and the ordeal.
I was back to the Hostel days but no teetotaler.
Next day after plenty of carb loading..Bhokwada/ Idly/ Pohe and a nice swim in the pool before doing so.
I started back at 10 AM.
It was a race against sun but the earlier day had prepared me for it.
It was a 28km easy drive (with City traffic at peak on Sinhagad road).
It was good to be alone. I could stop when I wanted to rest.
Back home I ate an apple and tried to catch up with sleep.
A 5:30 PM I went to the racecourse with Ila to do the regular run. ~5km
Ran a loop and walk-ran the other.
I was learning to cross train. I hope this effort did activate some of the grey matter which was otherwise in a dormant and rebellious mode.