On Sunday Karen and I rode the northern-most 5 mile segment of the Gateway Trail using the horse paths. For some reason the path seemed more sandy and rutted than in the past. That's my excuse anyway. Karen was on her mountain bike and I on the 29er. It was the first time we rode together, and probably was a bore for her from the exercise and excitement point of view, but I found it nice to have someone to talk to on the ride.
I had moderate success on the uphills, and had more success when I focused on balance over brawn. The first few challenging hills I tried hard to keep my legs pumping, and that seemed to result in stalling and unbalanced positions on the steepest part of the hill. On the way back I instead worked on keeping my butt under me and concentrating on good balance, even when approaching a stall. I found that I was more successful using that approach...focus on balance over speed.
I made a short video of Karen and me re-riding one of the trail's downhills. With the camera on a very short tripod you can't tell much about the pitch of the hill, but it was one that the first time down I started too fast and really had to keep my speed in check near the bottom. Dorky but fun. (shhh, don't tell Karen that it is posted here!)