05 June 2018


I didn't want give up Elephant Rock cold turkey, and I didn't want to ride 27 miles while Lizard worked, wishing he could ride the century. He's trying to get ready for the Triple Bypass, while I have no organized ride goals this year.

We like the Ride the Rockies route this year, but with the family California wedding I shot back in April and my parents' 50th anniversary coming up later this year, plus Lizard's work schedule, my vacation time was chewed up and gone.

Elephant Rock is one of my favorite rides. It's the unofficial opening of the recreational cycling season. There's even a 27-mile route, and I can pedal 30 miles now. But, again, I didn't want to ride without my favorite cyclist.

So I mixed things up a bit and went to church first, then hit the festival before the masses crossed the finish line. Boy, it sure is an unusual feeling to be able to go to church, fresh and clean, BEFORE a huge ride!!! Ha ha!

We've been concerned because a lot of the rides we like to do are not filling up anymore. We feared they'd start disappearing, one by one.

Elephant Rock, which I believe is the biggest ride in Colorado, with up to 7,000 people, appears to be in no danger of folding.

I initially planned to get pictures of the festival and the kids' events. But after scoring three pairs of cycling socks for $10 and three official ERock t-shirts for buy two, get one free, I decided I'd better get out of there while I still had money!

I started out the year hoping to be able to ride all the way to work and all the way home by May. By February, Lizard had confessed he is not entirely comfortable with me cycling downtown Denver in the dark. So I waited until there was enough daylight to complete the ride.

By April, Lizard told me he really doesn't like me riding to work at all if he is at work and can't come help me if something goes wrong.

I've often stated it took me 45 years to find someone who cares whether I come home at night, so I'm not going to complain that he wants me home safe and in one piece.

So, the challenge was on to find a way to train on weekdays without causing the love of my life to worry. After the two of us took a ride along the greenway after work one day, I decided there is no reason why I can't do that same ride before work... Drive to the park and ride, ride, then put my bike back in my car, lock up and go to work on the train.

It's been an absolutely wonderful experiences on the days I've been able to work the new training ride into my schedule!

We both LOVE Ride the Rockies, and we LOVE to train and get ready for the June event. We both love the exercise, we love the challenge of getting up mountain passes, and we love the fitness that comes with successful training.

However, both of us stressed every time we were drawn for Ride the Rockies because we felt like we had to ride as often as we could, good weather or bad, whether we were in the mood or not, because we had to be up to 70 miles a day for five consecutive days by this time every single year.

Lizard still has to train this year to be ready for the Triple, but we're finding a real joy in being able to ride when we want where we want because we want.

It's much more fun to ride the gorgeous greenway and have a bit of extra time to stop and shoot the wildlife instead of rushing through urban areas with traffic and stressing about being to work on time.

The more I ride, the more my elbow begins bothering me again. I've done 30 miles a couple of times now, but the fingers on my right hand are going numb by about mile 27, and my elbow is screaming at my by 30 miles.

It may be that I can't do more than 30 miles now. I don't want to do anything that takes away all the things I love, including cycling. When my elbow is sore, I have to cut back on crochet, driving my standard five-speed vehicle and Photoshopping. Well, and, of course, cycling. I've been off the bike more weekends this year than I've been on, due to elbow pain.

I'm doing all my physical therapy, and I'm easing off on anything that hurts when the pain returns. I plan to keep trying to build mileage, but I also realize I may have reached my summit.

And that's okay, because 30 miles is better than no miles, and 30 miles is a lot more than many people ever pedal in their entire lives. I feel very blessed that I can keep riding, even though I've encountered difficulties.

I'm having a blast stalking wildlife with the point-and-shoot (because I'm not supposed to carry the good camera around my neck or on my right shoulder anymore), and I've enjoyed the challenge of trying to make the point-and-shoot work as well as my real camera.

I wish I could have done Elephant Rock this year. Especially because the weather was so nice and cool this year! But there hopefully will be many Elephant Rocks in the future!


  1. Sometimes we do have to just do what we can do. And yeah, don't want to re-injure or flare anything up. 30 is way more than I could ever do haha

    Having someone who wants you home safe and sound sure isn't anything to complain about either.

  2. This is timely - I was just wondering today how your season was going. Sorry to hear about the elbow and the numb fingers (been there with the numbness). I hope things will get better for you.
    My mileage is pretty low this year, more because of time constraints. I'm coming to terms with that. To ride the kind of miles I'd like to is a part time job and I already have too many of those!
    Maybe next year we'll both be able to ride a little more. And if not, we'll enjoy riding however much we can!
    I hope Lizard's training is going well.


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