Thursday, July 11, 2013

Our new Hobby.

Over the last several months I have been searching for a new Hobby.  I really thought I wanted to get in to Photography (and I might still down the road) but every time I had the opportunity to invest in a DSLR I just got scared it would be a waste of money for me.  I loved Hiking but with Corey's new 6-day workweek we never have the time to drive to any good trails.

Corey used to be very in to Road Biking, before he moved to Richmond.  Road biking has never really sounded fun to me though. Riding around cars, racing, hunching over all the time for more speed...just not for me.  Mountain Biking however sounded like something that could be fun and good for me.

I started messaging around on facebook to see if any of my friends were in to mountain biking.  It turns out a good friend from Middle School, that I recently reconnected with is, what good timing!  Last Saturday I rented a bike from River City Outfitters and we went around Brown and Belle Island.  It turns out that although I am not that fabulous at it, I had a lot of fun, burned a ton of calories and Richmond has a plethora of trails!

Corey and I decided we would rent bikes together on 4th of July.  We went to Pocahontas State Park and rode two different trails.  The first one was fabulous, it is also a hiking trail but with lots of hills so good for both of us.  The waterfall in the pictures below is in the middle of the trail, just another reason to love Richmond.  I love that we are so close to all this fabulous nature.

I was feeling good after the 4.8 miles of the first trail and let Corey convince me to go on a second trail. Well to make a long story short, we got lost!  The second trail was not marked well at all, the map they give you at the gate does not help you at all and couldn't pull up anything on GoogleMaps (tree cover was too thick to see anything on the maps).  Our 8-mile planned ride for the day turned in to 11.25.  I have neverbeen so happy to see an Exit Sign!

Luckily RO did not end up charging us extra even though our 2 hour ride become a 4-hour ride.  Man look at those calories burned!  Once we went to Tropical Smoothie for some Protein Shakes, Showered, collapsed (napped) on the sofa and recuperated we were both surprisingly ready for more.  Since my first ride Corey had already been doing a ton of research on bikes and even gone to a couple shops.  He already knew he loved biking and is super excited I enjoy MTB (Mountain Biking). Once he rode he was sold (I was afraid he would miss the speed of road biking).  We had planned to rent until the end of August but when we did the math we realized that by that time we spent all that money renting we could buy us both bikes.  The fact that RO closed too early on weekdays for me to rent was a real bummer too.  So on Saturday we ended up buying Bikes and going back to Pocahontas.

My New ride.

Corey's new ride.
We were much more prepared this time.  We had a much better app (that showed up the trail we had ridden as we were riding so we could retrace our steps if needed) and a map from the bike store.  I was amazed what a difference riding a nice bike fit to me made!  We didn't ride that far because my muscles were still sore and the humidity was insane that day.

I did fall twice on Saturday and have trail-burn and a HUGE bruise to show for it.  

I've been applying Miracle Oil to them both so thankfully they are fading pretty quickly, but doesn't look like I'll be wearing skirts to my parties this weekend.

Tuesday after work I went on my first solo road.  There is another park about 15 minutes from our house.  They have graveled double trail (hiking and biking) with plenty of single trails (biking only) all over the place.  It is not quite extreme for experience riders but perfect for my skill level.  I worked a lot on stopping/starting, riding while standing and a few hills.

287 calories burned in 40 minutes is a lot better than any 40 minutes I've ever had at the gym and it was a lot more fun.  My muscles were killing me, Corey says the ride was good for stretching them out but I admit I only kept riding because the breeze felt amazing.

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