Wind or Hills?

Today’s topic of discussion: Wind or Hills?

For me, it’s a no-brainer – give me hills any day, and keep the wind. The caveat I’ll put on that is that I’ve never really ridden or ran mountains, as in over about 3 or 4 miles of continual decent climbing, and my max climb is probably around 500 feet (like on a routine basis – I’ve done a decent amount of backpacking/hiking in various sets of mountains). Yeah, I’m a flatlander.

Hills – Hills can be dealt with. Take shorter steps. Run slightly across the grade. Smaller chainring, bigger cog. They’re a challenge that can be broken down to one’s skills. AND there’s always the promise of a downhill while one’s running uphill. Although that promise is a lot more enticing when one’s on skis or wheels.

Wind? There’s not a darn thing you can do. If the wind’s blowing, unless it’s within about 45 degrees of one’s posterior, it’s going to slow you down. Vector addition and all that. Plus, wind always will shift to slow one down. And unless it’s really blowing, there’s not a whole lot of speed advantage unless one is sailing. And then, one needs to worry that the wind will increase the chop and potentially upset one’s drink.

4 easy miles today at lunch. No Forerunner, no iPod. No clue how long it took, ‘cept it was most likely closer to 10 minute miles than 8. But it’s all right. The whole thing pretty much felt good. I didn’t finish strong, but I finished. May have been a bit dehydrated, too. Oh, and the wind was fierce, blowing cold and strong straight out of Canada, with a healthy fetch across the bay.

I’ll skip the food details, but it was all good stuff. 50/50 extra lean ground beef / ground turkey meatloaf for supper. My wife should start a healthier food restaurant. I swear, there’s a happy medium to be found between sprouts and beans and deep-fried twinkies. Somebody needs to notice this and make a mint serving sensible but tasty food.

One last recommendation: NPR did a bit on Wayne Shorter, a jazz saxophonist who got noticed with Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, was part of the Miles Davis Quintet with Ron Carter and Herbie Hancock. Brilliant.