Back in the Saddle, Feels Good

MG and I have been off the tandem since the end of the Endless Mountains 1000K, and we have missed the rides together. But, it was necessary. Our knee pains took about a month to fully heal, and, well, we needed a break from the bike after months of long rides.

We started riding a couple of weeks ago around town on our singles, but not on the tandem.

This weekend, with perfect early autumn weather beckoning, we got back out and found the joy in tandeming all over again. With a weeklong Shenandoah Valley inn-to-inn tour coming up, it was time to clip in, shake off the cobwebs and get our groove going.

Saturday we put in 35 miles on our standard roundtrip coffee ride to Potomac, Md., dodging throngs of pedestrians and drivers who had the exact same desire to get out in the warm October sun. Today we went out to Marshall, Va. for a mellow 56-mile ramble in the Front Royal, Va. area. Good news: no knee pain over a bunch of easy rollers and one decent climb, Chester Gap.

It was no century, nor a brevet, but for us it was a victory. Injuries are tough, and the temptation to start cycling again too soon is great. Fortunately we managed not to re-injure ourselves, and feel ready for our tour.

Plus: We met cyclist Ben Tabor, recently of the Bike Rack shop here in D.C., who is riding to Portland, Ore. via New Orleans. Is that cool or what? We try to always stop and talk with our fellow riders on loaded bikes — they have such neat stories. Good luck Ben!

Though we ride the same bike, the perspective from the stoker compartment is always interesting. In that vein, MG has posted a nice roundup of our weekend over at her charming Chasing Mailboxes blog.

See my photos here and MG’s at her Flick page.

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