I got out about the same time (not sure why, since I didn't go back to sleep for a few minutes after the alarm went off), and got moving.
I tried, as yesterday, to push my cadence a little bit higher, and that seemed to work pretty well. Again, though, I don't know how well, because the heart rate meter was a bit flaky again. But when it started working, things looked pretty good, so I'm hopeful it was good all along.
So I zipped around the bottom loop pretty quickly, until I got to Gravelly Point, where I started stopping to take pictures again. I didn't get the colors in the sky, like yesterday, though that wasn't a surprise. But I did get calm water and a pretty good sky, so that made for a few decent shots. The one above was my second favorite; my favorite, it might not surprise you to hear, was shot on the tripod (this one was free-hand; I'm not sure how I managed to be so steady for a 1/8s exposure, especially without stabilization or a viewfinder).
Regardless, I got moving again after taking a few, and finished out the ride. I finally managed to save it as a separate route from the Farlex Loop I've been doing for a while (Farlex referred to the geography, and this is much the same areas, so it's the 'Farlex Figure 8'). The new route is much the same, but the little changes make it a bit longer and quite a bit hillier.
Again, 26.5 miles, almost 1200' of elevation, and I averaged 14.4mph again. Not sure what I'm really doing differently, but it's working.
The only bad thing out of this morning is that I slept on my shoulder weirdly, somehow. My left shoulder is really bugging me, in a way that used to be typical following rides, but which hasn't happened in a while. Not sure why it kicked back up again. Sometimes I can fix it by pushing on a specific spot, but haven't managed it yet, this time. Hope that changes.
Anyway, I won't be able to go on the group ride on Saturday, so I might do a hard ride tomorrow, or I might take it easy again tomorrow and go hard, on my own, on Saturday. Not sure.
Either way, I'm happy to say that I finished all of the Strava challenges for the month. Not sure I'll ever do that again; certainly never come close, before.
Regardless, go Caps!