Archives for category: Uncategorized

ArnpriorCycling Nov 29/20: 3 Riders; 62.7 kms; 2 hours; 246 m

Hello –

Now, that was more like it, just a superb morning for a brisk cycle. There was sunshine, dry roads, and cool air with a taste of the glacier in it’s breath. It was a great, lung bursting gasp, as one might attempt on the death bed to flee the grim reaper’s grasp – another moment, however briefly stolen before final extinction. Ah, but, it was glorious. You just should have been there.

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling (private)
– IG @arnpriorcycling (private)
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

“When I was one-and-twenty
       I heard a wise man say,
“Give crowns and pounds and guineas
       But not your heart away;
Give pearls away and rubies
       But keep your fancy free.”
But I was one-and-twenty,
       No use to talk to me.” (aeh)

ArnpriorCycling Nov 28/20: 3 Riders; 67.6 kms; 2 hours 14; 416 m

Hello –

The bed is cozy, the morning dark; there are other more enticing options to consider. Why put warm toes onto a cold floor; why test resolve against icy winds and wet road spray? Why ride a bicycle? Might as well ask, why does the moon wax and wane. “I exist as I am, that is enough” (ww).

We exist but for a blink, like a day fly on a summer’s day – unaware of the ephemeral. Now, I find myself too late and too obdurate for salvation. That offering was a cold, unappetizing, tainted dish. Damnation awaits, is expected if not welcomed.

Important Stuff – Tentative Plan:

When/Who: November 29/20: ArnpriorCycling
Start: 09:00 am (SHARP) start from Stinsons
Where: SW
Description: 60 kms
Coffee Stops: None
Weather: A mix sun and cloud 0-3 C
Wind: South West 15 kms/hr

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling (private)
– IG @arnpriorcycling (private)
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” kjv

Hello –

Snow, rain, wind, wet roads, dirt, grud, in general messy conditions for cycling but where else would you rather be that riding your bicycle in late November pedalling away the fatty bits. Hey, we all have fatty bits. They’re hard to eradicate because they multiply like rabbits in a warren. Give them an inch of waist and they’ll take two, then three, then four and before you know it there’s an extra notch in your belt. The fatty bits are everywhere – torso, legs, and arms. Some people even have fat heads. Scary!

Here’s a bit of whimsy by way of a poetic statement of gratitude for all that is and for all that came into being for reasons we don’t know or understand; but, as a consequence of their ‘being’, we should marvel and be grateful. I’m an atheist but I, too, marvel and sing, in my fashion, a ‘canticle’ of thanks for my own existence and the wondrous world in which we live. A glass or two of Cabernet Sauvignon takes the mind from the atrocious Christian denouement awaiting the damned. Enjoy, and revel in the moment; may the moments be continuous, memorable and many!

So, here’s the Important Stuff – Tentative Plan:

When/Who: November 28/20: ArnpriorCycling
Start: 10:00 am start from Sweet & Sassy
Where: Westward
Description: 50-70 kms
Coffee Stops: None
Weather: Sun and cloud 0-3 C
Wind: West 20 kms/hr

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling (private)
– IG @arnpriorcycling (private)
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

AS IF TO DEMONSTRATE AN ECLIPSE

I pick an orange from a wicker basket
and place it on the table
to represent the sun.
Then down at the other end
a blue and white marble
becomes the earth
and nearby I lay the little moon of an aspirin.
I get a glass from a cabinet,
open a bottle of wine,
then I sit in a ladder-back chair,
a benevolent god presiding
over a miniature creation myth,
and I begin to sing
a homemade canticle of thanks
for this perfect little arrangement,
for not making the earth too hot or cold
not making it spin too fast or slow
so that the grove of orange trees
and the owl become possible,
not to mention the rolling wave,
the play of clouds, geese in flight,
and the Z of lightning on a dark lake.
Then I fill my glass again
and give thanks for the trout,
the oak, and the yellow feather,
singing the room full of shadows,
as sun and earth and moon
circle one another in their impeccable orbits
and I get more and more cockeyed with gratitude. bc

ArnpriorCycling Nov 21/20 1 Rider; 103.8 kms; 3 hours 55; 481 metres

Well, hello. That was a windy ride into a cold, glacier’s face. I was glad to turn my back on it after a solo 47 kms slog up River Road to the Queensline. The return was mighty fine but I lacked the necessary punch to take full advantage of the tailwind. Mind you, there were moments of great speed and pumping of joy and of dancing on the pedals. In the end though, my body and mind were done; having fought valiantly on the first leg, I was like a prize fighter, windy and wobbly, after throwing too many random punches in the early rounds only to be knocked out. Not pretty. Should have seen it coming. KO’d!

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling (private)
– IG @arnpriorcycling (private)
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

“Not every man knows what is waiting for him, or what he shall sing / …. at the end.” ms

ArnpriorCycling Nov 14/20 1 Rider; 98 kms; 3 hours 35; 523 metres

Well, the narrative this morning was the wind. There’s really not much else to say, except like a dessert of yoghurt, rhubarb, and ice cream it was a mixed bowl of delight. One could talk about the cold air and the brooding sky but they were minor players in the morning’s drama. It was Jekyll and Hyde wind, friendly and fierce.

But, in the context of fourteen days of quarantine (now history), it was a welcome breeze from the confines of house arrest. Where else would you rather be – under COVID-19 scrutiny or free as a bird buffeted by the wind?

Those 14 days appeared to me like an eternity of deprivation. Okay, that’s an exaggeration. But, quarantine was no fun. The COVID-19 Minders hounded me like a Border Collie does sheep, keeping me penned and on edge. But, I’m COVID-19 free (non contagious) and free also from the hassling authorities.

Now, I’m left to muse on the greater threats posed by the inevitability of one’s death and of certain damnation. Eternal themes in the minds of man. To which I now add age and declining performance on the bike and in the bed. I’m not commenting on the latter but I’m doing my damnedest about the former.

Inactivity is not good – being off the bike for two weeks doesn’t help. The body ages quickly when not stressed. Before you know it, there’s a spongy belly and flabby dabby arms and moobs, appearing – like a moth pupa from a cocoon.

That’s not fake news. Getting slower with age is not fake news. It’s a fact, as is Trump’s defeat at the polls. One might rail against it but physical deterioration with age is a reality: VO2 max and cardio decline, muscular strength degenerates, body fat increases, and recovery time between bouts of exercise increases.

All of this is not a welcoming prospect but who’s going to jump off a cliff or hide in bed, shutting out the world with a pillow over one’s head. Not me. I may struggle; I may lag behind; I may get slower but I’m not given in. In time, Zen will come and I’ll reach a higher plane of consciousness and not have to chase my tail. I hope it’s a long way off.

“Do or decline” jb in jhp

So, here’s the Important Stuff – Tentative Plan:

When/Who: November 15/20: ArnpriorCycling
Start: 7:30 am start from Stinsons
Where: South and East
Description: 50-60 kms
Coffee Stops: None
Weather: Cloudy with rain in the forecast
Wind: SE 25+ kms/hr

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling (private)
– IG @arnpriorcycling (private)
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

“The best way out is always through” RF

Hello –

This in from Hillary Mantel’s The Mirror & the Light. It’s a delightful read. There are many marvellous passages. As an example, the following paragraph and the sentence below, which comes at the end of the paragraph, is set up exquisitely, like a behind- the-back pass at the net in basketball:

“But you cannot make a wife out of bonnets and sleeves; hold all her rings together, and you are not holding her hand.”

You’ll appreciate the artistry/craft when you read the paragraph in it’s entirety.

Hope all is well with everyone. I’m suffering greatly in my quarantine. But, of course, I exaggerate. My table is full, my bed warm, my hand firm, and my heart steady. Comfort and peace are relative. I have no grounds for complaints.

Complaint but querulous to the end. Frustrated, yes, but with aspirations, hopes, ambitions, and desires – impotent to change outcomes, and wishing things might be otherwise.

I will emerge into the light, likely; but, for the frail, in these COVID-19 times, in their retirement homes and nursing homes, for them their outlook is bleak, their prospects narrowing for enjoyment, with few remaining pleasures in life.

Eventually, the light fades and we’re bereft of friends and family, left alone looking out forlornly into an unfeeling world. Soon or late the end comes.

So, breathe deeply and often and exult in your sweat from hard efforts on the bicycle because it won’t always be so! Embrace the climb as well as the thrill of the downhill.

“Seven years back, when Florence was besieged by the Emperor and begging for French aid, the burgesses went to the merchant Borgherini’s house: ‘We want to buy your bedroom.’ There were fine painted panels, rich hangings and other furnishings they thought might make a bribe for King François. But Margherita, the merchant’s wife, stood her ground and threw their offer back in their faces. Not everything in life is for sale, she said. This room is my family’s heart. Away with you! If you want to take away my bedroom, you will have to carry your loot over my corpse.

“He (Cromwell) would not die for his furniture. But he understands Margherita—always supposing the story to be true. Our possessions outlast us, surviving shocks that we cannot; we have to live up to them, as they will be our witnesses when we are gone. In this room are the goods of people who can no longer use them. There are books his master Wolsey gave him. On the bed, the quilt of yellow turkey satin under which he slept with Elizabeth, his wife. In a chest, her carved image of the Virgin is cradled in a quilted cap. Her jet rosary beads are curled inside her old velvet purse. There is a cushion cover on which she was working a design, a deer running through foliage. Whether death interrupted her or just dislike of the work, she had left her needle in the cloth. Later some other hand—her mother’s, or one of her daughters’—drew out the needle; but around the twin holes it left, the cloth had stiffened into brittle peaks, so if you pass your finger over the path of her stitches—the path they would have taken—you can feel the bumps, like snags in the weave. He has had the small Flanders chest moved in here from next door, and her furred russet gown is laid up in spices, along with her sleeves, her gold coif, her kirtles and bonnets, her amethyst ring, and a ring set with a diamond rose. She could stroll in and get dressed. But you cannot make a wife out of bonnets and sleeves; hold all her rings together, and you are not holding her hand.

Christophe says, ‘You are not sad, sir?

No. I am not sad. I am not allowed to be. I am too useful to be sad.’”

Hello –

Ever hopeful but reality intrudes, like the prospect of a second date, always a possibility but not likely. Such are expectations shattered on the rocks of disappointment and rejection – twin boulders crushing the heart.

Just so, I report that the forecast is still calling for crappy weather – showers and mid teens temperatures. Not the best outlook for a group ride. Road spray, if not actual rain, would make for a nasty cycle. So, no change in the status of the group ride for to-day: Cancelled.

Ciao for now, ac

There’s two people in this hallway
But there’s only one of us
That’s tryna keep this fire goin’ ab

Hello –

At the risk of proposing another ride that doesn’t suit anyone, I’m giving it another try to-day. I say this knowing that some of you may be riding with Joe and Perry in Lanark. That’s a beautiful county for cycling so if that’s your plan that’s great. You’ll enjoy it, I can vouch for that.

For those of you hanging around these parts, there is a threat of rain but the temperature and humidity will be high. That means road spray and wet legs and wet clothing but no cold weather to deal with. Also, the rain is likely to be scattered showers. Sunday’s weather as of now is not looking good.

I’ll check the forecast and look outside in the morning and I’ll do a Blog Post to confirm or to cancel the group ride. I’ll send the Post by 6 am.

Important Stuff – Tentative Plan:

When/Who: July  11/20: ArnpriorCycling
Start: 7:30 am Start from Stinsons
Where: Carp via W-L and Pakenham, Panmure, Stonecrest
Description: 91 kms of rolling countryside
Coffee Stops: None
Weather: Scattered rain; Temp 24-26C
Wind: NE 12-20

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling
– IG @arnpriorcycling
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

Let the rain kiss you/ Let the rain beat upon your head with silver liquid drops/Let the rain sing you a lullaby/The rain makes still pools on the sidewalk/The rain makes running pools in the gutter/The rain plays a little sleep song on our roof at night/And I love the rain.    Langston Hughes

Hello –

This may not suit everyone or anyone that’s why I’m sending it out early so you can plan accordingly. I hope you can join me on Wednesday for a great ride in the Gatineau, an absolute top of the line venue for road cycling. I think it a go-to place to ride at least once or twice a week, if that suits your schedule.

We could also make it an annual tradition to cycle the Gats every July 01, as a way to celebrate Canada Day. Next year (when  COVID19 is history), we might even be able to celebrate with a beer afterwards!

However, if the prospect doesn’t appeal or you have other plans or you would rather ride locally with others that’s fine. Everyone has to choose his own path and compatible companions. My choice may not suit you.

Important Stuff – Tentative Plan:

When/Who: July  01/20: ArnpriorCycling/MAFIA
Start: 5:45 am P3  Gatineau 5:45 am Start from P3
Where: Three Loops – Black’s x2; FLP x1, Lookout x3
Description: 83 kms of rolling countryside
Coffee Stops: None
Weather: >>>>>Sunny; Temp 08-17C
Wind: >>>>>>NE Light. Haha

The early start will allow us to avoid the crowds and get us back to Arnprior around 10 am(?). On the other hand if you’re not in favour of the 5:45 am start, what time would suit? The earlier the better, given it’s the National Holiday and the park will be busy. Also, the temperatures will be in the mid twenties. Still, I’d rather enjoy company than cycle alone.

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling
– IG @arnpriorcycling
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

Filed under Mind Blowing

“According to some Jewish traditions, Adam and Eve were created by God on Friday morning, September 26, 3760 B.C. They were given life (according to tradition) several hours before sunset.”

Hello –

I won’t be at Stinsons this weekend.

All is well. Just reevaluating my cycling goals in light of the potential negative effects of hard exercise on endurance athletes, especially when pushing the extreme limits of cardiac output. There is mounting evidence of atherosclerosis and atrial fibrous of the heart from overuse. This is not the most recent report but there are several others. I do enjoy the group riding but find that my heart rate to keep up is considerably higher (as a % of MHR) than my younger cycling companions and thus subjecting myself to greater physiological stress.

” …. any athlete can develop overuse injuries in their joints, there is concern that endurance athletes may also develop training related cardiac injury. Moderate exercise is well established as better for health than a sedentary lifestyle but vigorous exercise may prove to be harmful in some individuals.”

“Just like any other muscle, athletic activity modifies the heart in predictable ways. These changes are structural, functional and electrical.”

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2018-08-left-atrial-fibrosis-arrhythmias-athletes.html

The Mayo Clinic has published similar research.

Not wanting to be alarmist, of course. This study and others are mostly relevant to susceptible individuals. So, if you’re not susceptible, you’re probably okay.

Weather forecast looks good, however. For those of you riding have fun and safe cycling.

I’ll leave it to KO to send an email, or not.

Important Stuff  – Check back another time

Okay, stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Contact:
– arnpriorcycling@bell.net
– Twitter a@arnpriorcycling
– IG @arnpriorcycling
– WP arnpriorcycling.blog

“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.” jrt