Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Mezzomonte 2

Mezzomonte is a popular local lung-scorcher.  Very convenient access right off of Via Pedemontane by Polcenigo.  The road is excellent- smooth with lovely curves.  Nice view too. And not too long- if you bonk, you can easily turn around and roll back down the hill.

I warmed up on the three rollers from my house to Polcenigo.  Then I turned right at Coltura and headed up.  I climbed alternating between sitting and standing in the pedals.  Never got sore this way, and got a good balance between lower back/glutes, quads, abs and lungs.  It's good to switch bikes (or at least gear clusters) sometimes because it breaks you out of habits.  The compact gearing on the Merckx had me spoiled- I was always tweedling in low gear up climbs unless my back started hurting.  I'll try to remember to change up more from now on- it feels better.

The climb averages 9% for the first 4 km, with some good stretches of 12% (says the book, but my Garmin says 16%).  Pushing 39x26 I had to concentrate on my breathing, which is something I'm working on.  I don't know if it's the medicine I'm on for the tumor which can have a side-effect of causing pulmonary fibrosis (as well as fibrotic heart valves) but I really struggle to breathe when climbing.  Could just be old age or adolescent smoking coming back to haunt me, who knows.  Anyway I must really concentrate on breathing deeply from my diaphragm and working the intercostals as well.

The town itself is very quiet.  Some old geezers were hanging out in front of the bar, maybe having the first ombra of the day (at 10 AM?)  I went to the end of pavement for the first time, where a dirt road heads down toward Dardago.  I couldn't find the dirt road up to Piancavallo.  When I fix up my mountain bike I'll try these.

The descent is great with all the curves and the smooth pavement.  The total climbing home on Via Pedemontane is about 300m.  Though the grade is milder, it's longer and more trafficked.  Very nice when you reach our town though as it's slightly downhill- a great cool down.

The gradient up Mezzomonte, then down and home

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