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Sweeping in the rain, or is it mopping? Day 5 of the Bike Rally

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Johnstown to Lancaster
108.8 km

Today was our team’s day to sweep.  The sweep cyclists ride behind the slowest rider and serve as a marker to the bike rally support vehicles that there are no riders behind us. The actual responsibility just falls on the team’s co-captains (they wear the funky helmet decorations) but we decided it would be nicer and more social to do it together.

Our team co-captain thought that we shouldn’t pressure the slower riders.  It would be best if they didn’t even know we were there.  People feel bad about being swept. Instead, we decided to wait for quite awhile before we left in the morning. We set our pace at 20 km/hr and set off.

Within the first half hour it started pouring rain.  And it didn’t let up.

At the morning break we were soaking wet and shivering cold.  Rally organizers stuck us in heated vans so we could warm up.  Again, we waited for the last rider to leave.

Luckily the rain did the active part of the sweeping job for us. No one wants to ride slowly in the rain. We got to the lunch stop on the Thousand Islands in pretty good time.

It was an interesting exercise in patience for me. While I like to ride slow and fast, this was slow enough I found myself braking.  My heart rate didn’t go over 100 for awhile. I think it was a solid zone 1 day.

While I can’t say I enjoyed the rain, the time to chat with people and get to know team members better was pretty nice. The scenery was also pretty spectacular and it was good to have time to appreciate it. Thanks Jen for the hand signal for scenic vista. I loved the ride along the Thousand Islands Parkway.

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