Oh yeah... This morning felt great. Got up late, so I didn't want to do anything too big. Probably a good idea because some cloud cover from last night kept it warm and had the humidity up this morning. Not pleasant riding conditions, but I felt really on.
Started off with a couple micro-intervals (7:30 minutes with 15 sec on/off). Then did a 5 minute interval at 8.5-9 RPE. I had to go off of RPE because my HR was about 10 BPM higher than it normally is. The effect of taking 4 days off of the bike? Coming back into Fountain Hills, on that 6% climb, I was actually in recovery mode. My speed was pretty low, but I was able to spin up it at about 75% - 80% of the speed I was able to do it 3 months ago. The last half (maybe 200 - 300 yards) I kicked it up with a good sprint. Got up to 18 mph and held it... on a 6% grade. And all of this with my legs still feeling a little sluggish when I started out.
Followed this up with some steep climbing (nothing over 12%) around the northern side of Fountain Hills with Green Day's American Idiot setting my pace. The last song which ended as I pulled into garage from the ride was Letterbomb. The chorus to this qualifies as an anthem for everyone who harbors secret desires to be an enduro fruitcake:
It's not over 'till your underground
It's not over before it's too late
Yup... As long as you're not dead there's still energy to keep going.