It IS easier to remember counting backwards, so here I go.
Ride 219 was today. Howie, David, and I rode to Sunol along 680, then back over Palomares and Redwood on what became an 83-mile day. I started at 6:00 and picked up my companions along the way. It was freezing in Orinda and Lafayette with frost on lawns and roofs. Bravely and unwisely, I wore just a long-sleeve base layer and a windstopper long-sleeve jersey and windstopper gloves. I had my super-thick wool socks on. The socks worked pretty well, the gloves did not, but yesterday afternoon and evening were so pleasant and mild, and this morning it was so not-that-cold at my house, that it just did not occur to me that we may encounter temperatures in mid to high 30s. By the time we returned it was a little after noon and nearly 30 degrees warmer and my clothes felt just right.
We had a mellow and chatty ride. On the flat from Walnut Creek almost to Sunol, where we could have ridden 21 mph, we rode 18-19. When we weren't talking, we were hydrating. Boy, were we hydrating. I've never been on a ride with so many bathroom breaks, at least not since I'd seen Monty Python's Marathon for the Incontinent. But drinking well, eating well, and riding at controlled pace left us with good legs. I felt good climbing Palomares and, with 75 miles in my legs, climbed Redwood very strongly.
Ride 218: Just a half an hour recovery ride on the trainer.
Ride 217: First class at VeloSF's new location on Broadway. Exercise studios are bright, with good natural light. Space in the studios is a little tighter. The gym smells of paint and windows don't open, so it'll smell painty for a while. We did 70 minutes of slow cadence work in big gears. Lots of pushing and lots of attempted circular pedaling to engage as many muscles as possible. There was some engagement. It was hard. We were all glad it was over.
Ride 216: Easy half an hour on the trainer again.