A couple of days ago I did my 20 mile bike ride and didn't feel as good at the end of it as I wanted to. I was a little dismayed but took yesterday off entirely other than walking Zoe. This morning as we came back from our walk I realized it was cool enough to support some bike riding so I hopped on my road bike. Rather than go somewhere else to ride I decided on doing the 7ish mile ride from my house.
We live on a plateau. Go very far in any direction and there are some pretty big hills. That is actually a bonus. Interval training and better than pumping weights. But until recently it has been very difficult for me to power to the hills. Way too much time off and age have not been good to me. When I was in the Navy I could ride around the block a few times and build up hamstrings and gluts that were powerful. But the large muscles don't do that anymore. Which also means I gain weight much faster and keep it on longer.
But I did throw in a big hill as I went around the loop and managed to get through it far easier than I had been. Thus encouraged I thought about extending the ride and then just said to hell with it and went around again. Did the whole loop (less the big hill) which ended up with a 15 mile ride, over an hour. And I still feel fine.
So big success. Something to build on. Inspired by the Tour.