I made a trial run on Saturday, checking to see how long it would take, and to see whether the trip back was doable or far too uphill. (Answer: Doable.) This morning I strapped up my heart rate monitor, completely immersed myself in blazing yellow spandex, and set out on the 12-mile arc.
Below is an incredibly cool interactive map of the trip. Go ahead and click the "Speed" and "Heart Rate" check boxes to see them overlaid on the elevation graph. (Isn't that cool!)
In total, the ride took about an hour of actual riding time, six minutes of resting or waiting around at stop lights, and ten minutes of enduring taunts from coworkers when I showed up wearing skin-tight bike shorts. The hour is only about 10-15 minutes longer than it would take for me to take the metro (walking to metro + riding the train + walking to office), and I arrived at work with my exercise already done for the day!
If the calculations are to be believed, I burned over *900 calories* on my ride -- and I felt GREAT when I got to work! Totally energized, and -- after a quick hop in the office shower -- ready to go. (NB: I did need coffee about an hour later.) Over the last couple hours I have felt the slightly odd combination of tired and wired.
I've also been incredibly hungry all day; going forward I'll be sure to have some more protein and slow-digesting carbs before I head out.
I've got choir rehearsal tonight so I plan to leave my bike here, take the metro to work in the morning, and ride back tomorrow evening.
So far, so good.