I rode the Summits of Bothell for the second time this morning. It is a really challenging bike ride with 8 significant climbs, with about 3250 feet of climbing over 36 miles. It wasn't any easier than last year. My training has been really spotty lately. Well, really non-existent.
A friend asked me last night "What is more difficult, running or biking? And don't give me that 'it depends' crap". Although it depends a little, running is definitely more difficult for me. I was a biker first, biking is more social and there tends to be lots of stops along the way, and of course there is coasting which running is sorely lacking in. The biking I do isn't racing of course. The only clock I'm generally trying to beat is getting in before sundown or before the beer garden closes.
With this in mind, I don't tend to train as well on the bike. When I have a marathon on the calendar, I set up a training program 16 weeks out and stay pretty faithful to it. I show up (reasonably) well prepared on race day. With biking I tend to more or less just show up. I'll do a few rides here and there ahead of time, but days like today remind me that I need to take my training more seriously. I made it through reasonably well, but it would be nice to climb hills without the threat of losing my breakfast.