Attempting 40 Miles On the Bike

So yeah……Memorial Day Weekend came and Michael and I realized that the Gorge Ride was only a few short weeks away. I also realized that I’m only averaging about 12 miles a week on the bike currently. Weather hadn’t cooperated much in May so that I could try riding twice a week to work–which I’d hoped to do. That would have at least gotten me to 20+ miles a week and in much better cycling shape to attempt a 40 mile ride.

I decided to skip my swim on Sunday and go for a long bike ride with Michael instead. I was nervous about a lot of things: could I even DO a long bike ride?? Would my knee bother me like it did during Saturday’s run? Would my back hold up after lifting weights and working in the garden the day before we rode? Who knows. Since I don’t have a crystal ball, I had to just give it a try.

Sunday was a dreary, but thankfully dry day. This post should probably be called “I Can’t Believe it’s February in May” because dang was it a cool day! Where is Spring?? We rode from our house up the I-205 Bike Path. It’s a series of rolling hills and you really don’t notice how hilly it really is until you’re mid-hill and you feel like dying. The photo below was after riding for almost an hour and we took a break at our usually spot.

I ate one of my Gu’s for energy because right before the below photo was a huge hill. My legs were burning!

After resting a bit we headed back North on the trail. The trail was relatively empty most of the day. It also felt like we were riding through a rain cloud. It wasn’t raining–YET–but it felt as if it was going to dump buckets of rain on us at any moment. The sky was gloomy and gray.

We arrived at theΒ  Marine Drive trail after many, many hills where I thought I was going to die…Marine Drive is fairly flat and it’s easy to bike quickly. Michael took off ahead of me because his bike is about 10 pounds lighter than mine πŸ˜‰ and I peddled along.

We rode by the airport and then stopped for a snack by the Marina.

Since Michael was trying to stay on the Four Hour Body Diet as closely as possible, he snacked on raw almonds. I on the other hand, had another GU and was grateful for it! I needed the energy. I wasn’t quite feeling like I was ready to bonk yet but since we’d skipped lunch to ride, my stomach was growling a bit. The spinach, bacon and cream cheese omelet Michael and I had split before riding wasn’t quite enough.

We’d ridden about two hours at this point I think. Michael complained about his feet being too cold and he wanted to turn around. I was okay with that. I’d worn double socks so my feet were fine but I was getting huuuungry and knew a protein bar was NOT going to satisfy that. Turning around at that point was the right decision too.

We turned around and rode back East on Marine Drive–it was still empty–and then connected back with the I-205 Path.

So far that day I was feeling really good. My body was holding up, I had no knee pain, I didn’t have a sore back from riding. In fact, the butt butter I put on pre-ride seemed to be doing something for the saddle soreness too.

There were tons of hills on the way home though–and these were KILLER hills too. I can happily say that I never once had to stand on the bike in order to make it up the hill however, my legs were dying by the time I made up those hills. I am definitely not in cycling shape for hills. Which makes sense because my commute is pretty flat.

We made it back to the highway by our house and luckily the traffic was pretty light so it was an easy, safe ride back to the house.

Ride Stats:

Time: 3 hours

Calories Burned: 1277

Miles Biked: 32

We were both FAMISHED and nearing grumpy. Showered and dressed, we headed to Foster Burger for a late lunch/early dinner. I’d never been to the new super popular burger joint in Portland and I am so happy I finally got to eat there!

The restaurant was very cute–decorated with old concert ads. I took quite the walk down memory lane seeing the old bands I used to love. I got The Foster Burger: all natural, hormone-free ground beef char-grilled on a homemade brioche bun. It came with lettuce, pickles, sauteed onions, Foster Sauce, ketchup and Pepper Jack cheese. OH MY GOD! I don’t know if it’s because I burned almost 1300 calories and was hungry enough to eat my own arm, but that burger was to die for. I ordered the cole slaw as the side. I apologize for the crappy photo that does NOT do this burger justice:

I feel super happy that I was able to do over 30 miles on the bike with little to no soreness and was rewarded with an amazing meal. It was a great way to spend the long weekend!

QUESTION: Did you do any kick-ass fitness during the long weekend outside of the gym? And what do you prefer on your burgers?

Author: Lisa Eirene

About Lisa Eirene Lisa lost 110 pounds through calorie counting and exercise. She swims, bikes, runs, hikes and is enjoying life in Portland, Oregon. Her weight loss story has been featured in First Magazine, Yahoo Health, Woman's Day and

24 thoughts on “Attempting 40 Miles On the Bike”

  1. That is awesome Lisa! Go you!!! πŸ™‚ I keep meaning to get the bike out but this dreary Portland weather is kind of a downer. I was riding on the springwater corridor every day last summer — I think I got up to about 25-30 miles, only stopping once or twice to have a snack. I love riding. I love the picture of Michael on the river, that’s such a good spot to sit and have lunch.

    As for Foster Burger — they are pretty great! My boyfriend likes to go for the most gigantic burger whenever we’re out (mostly just to see what my reaction will be I think) so he got the Foster pile up last time and was happy with it. I got the veggie burger and it was pretty tasty too. It’s cool when we get fun new restaurants around town.

    Anyhow, keep up your awesome riding! I see your posts about riding to work and they are making me wish I was riding again so maybe I will try soon. I just get so nervous I’ll be late to work.

    1. Hi Kassi! I agree, the weather here has been way too gray and dreary. I won’t be riding to work this week because of the rain. But it looks like we might be having some nicer weather soon…

      That is really cool that you were able to ride the Springwater every day. You must have been in great cycling shape after doing that! Have you ever done the whole loop?

      1. Hi Lisa,

        No, I never did ride the whole loop. I’d ride out east of my house and then turn around when I got to the end out in the boring area. The trail just kind of stops in a Chevron parking lot. Or maybe it continued but I couldn’t find the obvious connection.

        Now the weather is too hot to ride! I’d love to get out this weekend, but the idea of being on a bike in 80 degree weather sounds really gross and sweaty to me.

        1. Last year when we were training for Reach the Beach we rode all the way out to Boring too but couldn’t figure out where the trail reconnected. It’s supposed to be a loop, why is it so hard? So we’d turn around and head back.

          You should have gone out today! It was GORGEOUS! Hot but a great day to ride.

          1. It’s my understanding that it’s not actually a loop. I think it was originally meant to be one, and adding an extra section to the north is actually in the works. I hope they do because riding and coming back isn’t nearly as fun as a whole loop.

            You’re probably right about the ride. I need to stop making excuses… Thanks for the kick in the butt πŸ™‚

  2. We did a giant hike this weekend-14.5 miles. Plus a short run (the same day as the hike-possibly a poor choice!) and a long run (9 miles) on Monday…
    I wanna try Foster Burger sometime-I’ve heard great things!
    kalin recently posted..Into the Wild

    1. It definitely takes some getting used to sitting on the bike a lot! Working out on the bike trainer all winter long helped me get ready for sitting on the bike seat.

  3. I think I want to come to Portland and eat my way around town! Perhaps I could rent a bike to ride on all the cool bike paths and burn off the calories I eat. My town is not very bike friendly, and I haven’t riden here.

  4. I hadn’t biked in a long time until last week in Toronto. We encountered a few hills and they were awful. I wished I could just run up them. The bikes we rented were heavy.

    I kept pushing my runs later in to the evening since I spent each day at the beach or park with family and friends. I know I could have just as easily run at the beach or park, but was more content to just play catch with a baseball or a football and relax.

    I was super proud of my Monday evening run (started at 8:30ish). I ran 5.25 miles in 45:43 (8:42). I felt like I was pushing on the pace, but didn’t think I was doing a harder effort than my 5K pace. I loooove summer dusk/night time runs.
    cindylu recently posted..Conferencing in Canada

    1. I really enjoy the later evenings as well. It’s nice going for a long walk after dinner time without a jacket or hurrying before sundown!

      Heavy bikes + hills are NEVER a fun experience! And I thought the same thing on the hills: Maybe I should just get off the bike and run up the hill!!

  5. Awesome job! Well, my kick ass fitness thing was the 50 mile flat tire ride. ugh.
    We are going for a nice 45 mile cupcake ride this weekend and I am looking forward to that!

    Here is a tip for hills – pull back on the handlebar as you go up hills. It will fully engage your core and help take some stress off of your legs. You will feel it in your abs the next day if you ride a lot of hills.
    Lori recently posted..May Wrap Up and curse of the tires

    1. Thanks for the tip Lori. I will give that a try this weekend when we go out for another ride. I am stubborn and refuse to stand in the saddle if I can avoid it!

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