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Journey of a 1000 Miles

September 20, 2008

After riding on steep or moderate hills this week, I was craving something a bit flatter for some easy spinning.  I know that they purportedly started clearing local bike trails on Friday, but I wasn’t sure of their progress.  I’d seen a post on one of the forums that Green County had their trails cleared, so Penny and I headed up to Xenia for the day.

Starting at Xenia Station gave us the option of several different trails. Penny hadn’t been on the section of trail from Xenia to Yellow Springs, so we headed up that way.  Taking an alternate route around downtown Xenia, we headed down the Creekside Trail toward the Fairgrounds Connector.  This gives you an nice scenic tour that only adds about 1.5 miles to the trip to Yellow Springs.

In Yellow Springs we made the mandatory stop at the Main Squeeze smoothie/juice bar.  The proprietor is always friendly, and we’ve just about filled up my “frequent drinker” card from my stops in here this summer… LOL!

While the incline up to Yellow Springs from Xenia isn’t intimidating by any stretch of the imagination, heading back south toward Xenia you can gain some fun speeds, making it very tough to stay within the trail speed limit of 20mph.

My energy level was zonked for some reason… perhaps lack of effective protein and carbs, or not drinking enough water… but Penny was kicking my butt and wanted to go much faster.  My legs were still munched from the hill riding I did without her this week.  Granted, she was also releasing a lot of pent up tension from the last couple of days (dealing with the death of a friend), so she had lots of energy.  When we got back to Xenia Station, I took a few minutes to fuel up, down more electrolytes, and focus on hydration.

Our next leg of the ride took us down the Prairie Grass Trail.  We traveled to Cedarville through farm country, on the trail that will become a section of the much longer Ohio to Erie Trail (running from the Ohio River to Lake Erie).

Arriving in Cedarville, my energy was crashing again despite fueling up at Xenia Station, so we found a cute little Coffee shop called Beans and Cream.  Although feeling a bit out of place in lycra* with the young college crowd, we got a coffee and a sandwich which was delicious.  Our only complaint was that there wasn’t a safe place to put our bikes, except along the building on the sidewalk.  Given this is a small conservate Christian college town, we really didn’t haven anything to worry about though, I guess.

The return leg on this relatively flat trail went much better and I enjoyed the scenery much better.  After a nice stop and sandwich, Penny couldn’t pull away from me on this leg… LOL!  In fact, it almost seemed like we got back too soon.

Our ride of about 40 miles put me over 1000 miles of biking since I started on the beginning of June.  It’s cool looking back at all I’ve gotten to see so far.  More so, I’ve learned more about SW Ohio in the past 4 months than I’ve learned in the past 3 years just from studying bike paths and putting rubber to the road.  The side benefits have been some nice exercise, but what I really like is feeling that breeze in my face!

Here’s to the next 1000 miles!

*”The further you get from your bike, the worse you look in lycra!”

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