Monday, April 30, 2012

The Propped Bikes

Last summer I got into propping my bike various places and taking pictures.  I seemed to like the pics so I will probably start fresh this season. I am going to post them here and ask you to tell me which one you like best.  Most of the pictures bring back happy memories for me.

This was on that wonderful bike path in Rhode Island.

This was taken after my first (and only) duathlon!!
And there's my old car, sigh.

This is also from that bike path in Rhode Island. I went
on it with my college friend.

This was taken on the first long ride I took by myself.  It
 was a loop through several towns and in different counties.

I loved this route. I was on a ride with my biking
friend who is game for anything.  I can't wait
to go on this route this summer.

This was at one of our meeting spots for group rides last summer.
On the Burlington Bike Path where I really got into these pics.
Last fall I had lots of sunset rides.

Also Burlington Bike Path.

Another sunset ride on the bike path. This was has been
my computer screen pic for a year or so.

Burlington bike path.

The bridge on the Burlington Bike Path that crosses the Winooski
River. This one was taken after a fun race (running)

This is on one of my favorite rides especially in the fall.

Do you take pictures over and over of any one thing that just floats your boat?  At least when I am taking pictures of my bike I'm not breaking my camera.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Random Vacation Thoughts

  • There are a lot of surfers in Maine.
  • Surfers in Maine don't ask if their wetsuits should be sleeves or sleeveless. They not only have sleeves, they have hoods, hands and feet. 
  • Water in Maine is even cold in August.  I can't imagine what it feels like now.
  • Surfers have the whole changing thing down with the towel around the body next to the car as they slide the wetsuit on. I take it they are commando under the wetsuit.
  • They  are hardcore to START surfing at 6:00 p.m.  
  • I only saw men surfers.
Okay enough with the surfers.

  • Coffee must be more expensive in Maine because no one seems to keep your breakfast coffee cup full.
  • Being near the ocean is a happy place for me.
  • Running is easier next to the ocean.
  • Biking next to the ocean is pure delight.
  • Vacationing solo is fun although it is a bit odd to think I haven't talked (in person) to anyone I know since Sunday.
  • There are no calories on vacation.  Right?
  • If I was on vacation all the time would I appreciate it less?
  • Lots of physical activity tires you out.
  • Doubles four days in a row tire you out.
  • There are many employed landscapers in coastal Maine.
  • People who live near water like to name their homes.
  • People who live near water like to name their driveways.
  • Why do people come to the sandy beach and sit on rocks?

  • My favorite run was my run on my last morning.  It was perfect in every way.
  • My favorite bike ride was truly the one on Monday in the rain and fog. It could be because I was so excited to be biking in Maine. It could be because I truly love adverse conditions.  I felt cheated this winter that I never had any great snowstorms to run in.
  • My favorite meal is mixed- the lobster roll from Maine Diner, the clam chowder from Lobster Cove and the beer from Maine Diner - it really hit the spot.
Back to the surfers:

  • They also get up in the very early morning - maybe before work - and get out there.  I am curious as to how much of the year they do this.  They certainly seemed to use every opportunity to get out there and do what they love. Very impressive.  
  • Okay this is it for my Maine posts. I have milked it all I can. On to cold Vermont running and biking.  Since I got back I went swimming but then I crashed.  Four days of doubles has caused my body to yell at me to take a break. So today I will do nothing!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Back Home and It's Snowing!

Yes it is snowing. It is only spitting snow but still.  Just to torture myself I went and looked up the weather for York, Maine today and it looked gorgeous!  When I came out of swimming today (yes, I got up and was swimming by 6 a.m.) it was freezing and damp and just beginning to sleet. Yuck!  Glad I didn't plan a bike ride today!

Yesterday while still in Maine I got one more run and bike ride in.  Check out was at 11 and I was there until 10:59.  No joke!  I was running early - not early enough to see the sun rise but it was still great.  Of course I did the usual route. I am sure there are people in the neighborhood calling the police about this woman who keeps going by their houses. "Officer, she thinks she is fooling us because she goes by with different clothes on running and biking but it is the same woman.  She goes by from both directions on her bike.  Officer, please check this stalker out." But why mess with success. That route rocks and I am going to keep taking it!

When I biked I went in both directions and extended it some but did go by the lighthouse in both directions. It was glorious!! The only down side - kind of a big one - was I broke my camera. I was trying to take a photo at the lighthouse using the timer. I propped my camera on a rock (with my I phone) and was speeding around trying to get in the picture.  A HUGE tractor trailer went spinning around the lot ???? and when it went by the rock the camera fell off.  That.Was.The.End.Of.The.Camera.

But all in all I can't say enough about what a great few days I had in Maine. I loved being on my own agenda doing what I wanted. I loved all the time I wanted for biking and running. It was a wonderful vacation!

I'll end with one of my favorite vacation sights always.........when it has nothing to do with me!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Run Walk Shop Bike

Today is my last full day in Maine.  I decided to do my long run here because looking at the ocean is more painless than my typical long run at home.  I did some exploring in a new area which took up about 7 miles.  Then I stopped to use the bathroom - something I never do at home as I don't run back by my house.  It was tempting to stop but I had a goal of 12 miles so I went back out and went on my lighthouse route which made getting back out there a bit easier.  It seemed fairly easy to do the 12 compared to some times but I wasn't exactly lighting my shoes on fire with my speed.  At one point I was on an island but it was quite small and there was nowhere to go.  Then I saw this cool suspension bridge where I tried without much success to take a self photo.  It led to some trails in the woods but I was reluctant to head into the woods alone so I didn't.

I always like bridges and this was a fun one.

Viewing it from a distance.

Trying to take a picture of myself


The lighthouse on my run....

Finally a speed limit sign I can do.....

After having a late breakfast which was really a lunch I went to walk on the Marginal Way.  I had done this years ago with my kids.  Truthfully I was a bit disappointed but it could be because I saw so many great scenes on my bike yesterday.  First I had to find the other end of it because I wasn't going to pay $6 to park. I did manage to and just had to do a bit more walking. It was cold and cloudy and not really the experience I was looking for.  My heel bothered me when I walked which I'm sure contributed to my not top notch mood.

The Marginal Way

Then I did a little shopping but really wanted to be back outside so I got on my bike for a short ride.  Glorious!  It was cloudy and late but still wonderful.

More surfers I saw on my ride....

The lighthouse on my ride - late afternoon, early evening

Then I drove up to the lighthouse to sit for awhile and just 
enjoy it.  I may have spent a good deal of this vacation
stalking this lighthouse. 

Tomorrow I hope to get a short ride in and possibly a run before I check out. Then it's home to Vermont with many good memories from this vacation.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

50 MIles!

I rode 50 miles today!  Last year it was well into the summer before I hit 50 miles!  I didn't plan to ride quite that much but I'll get to that.

I started the day out with a run. Well, I really started the day out lying in bed, looking at the ocean and wasting time on the computer. But once I was up I went for a run.  It was sunny but cool and quite windy.  I headed for my favorite route.

I played a bit with the self timer.  It was hard to get the camera to stay upright with the wind. I had to find a rock so it wouldn't get blown over.  One thing with being alone is it is hard to get pics of yourself. I doubt I will get any on the bike.  I am near the beach where all the surfers were last night. There were a few there this morning.

This is looking back toward the beach. I love the run up this road. There are beautiful views everywhere.  

I stop at the lighthouse of course. I took a picture of the transportation to get there  below. Could you ride on that.......especially in the winds that have been part of this week?  

My run was great but rather slow.  I enjoyed the sights and worried about how I was going to ride in the wind.  Once I got back to my room I changed for biking and thankfully threw a few extra things into a bag (pants) that it turned out I needed. Then I headed out for breakfast.  I have found I don't mind eating out alone at all even dinner. But service for a single gray haired older lady leaves something to be desired.  Yes, I would like more coffee.  Yes, more water would have been great.  
The bike made a great drying rack!  I have to admit I came close to saying it was too windy and I didn't need to go on that long ride I had been looking forward to. I could do it another day, another year, another life.  But I bucked up and went for it.  I was glad I had pants and had 3 layers on top and never regretted it.  I started out parked quite near the Maine Diner and rode to Kennebunkport.  I kept thinking about how I didn't like where my car was. It was isolated and the road from there to Kennebunkport was very boring.  I didn't want that to be the end of my ride.  Once I figured out where else I could park it I rode back and got it and had 11 miles of my ride done in my new parking place. This turned out to be a GREAT decision.

We came to Maine a lot as our kids were growing up.  We always brought bikes and I had ridden a lot of these roads before and this part was a trip down memory lane. The ride along Ocean Avenue is very nice and looks out on the very prime piece of real estate the Bush family owns.  I'd love my own little peninsula in Maine.  Then I headed to Goose Rocks Beach with an out and back to Cape Porpoise too.  I really enjoyed this part.  
Cape Porpoise above and below

When the kids were even younger we stayed near Goose Rocks Beach. As I rode by where we used to stay all prepared to get all sentimental the place had been changed into condominiums!  Oh well. I did go down to Goose Rocks Beach and along the shore - very nice. 
on the way to Goose Rocks Beach
As I continued I was getting into some new territory where I had never ridden. I came to Fortunes Rocks which was amazing. I rode along the shore - so beautiful and wild - in what seemed to be a more isolated and less populated area.  

Then I came to a place where the ride took me out and back on this fairly long peninsula. I am not sure if this was still Fortunes Rocks. When I got to the end it was wild wild wild and oh so gorgeous!  My pictures don't do it justice at all. I think it is called Biddeford Pool.

It was definitely a cool ride.

The last new place that I came to was the College of New England. I was glad to get here as it meant I would be turning around and heading south again.  I stopped there on this oh so lovely bench and had a snack. 

 Once I started out again it was just riding back, no more ocean views.  The route kept to back roads which was nice but after a bit I couldn't figure out my directions any more.  I turned around as nothing made sense and went in the opposite direction.  Again I got confused and eventually asked a policeman for directions. Problem was when I got to the second turn I was so tired  I could not remember what he had told me.  I went right a fair ways and then turned around and went a different way. Well of course eventually I got where I needed to be.  It ended up being 49.45 miles so I rode along the beach where I was parked until I hit 50. I was so glad I was not headed up Route 9 to end my ride. 

Since my way home took me right by the Maine Diner I stopped for dinner.  What would you have after a 50 mile bike ride?
If it was a cold beer.....

a cup of clam chowder 

and a lobster roll this was the place to be.