I made it!! I had a great ride today. Let’s take a tour, shall we?
I woke up at 5:50 and packed my bike bag while breakfast cooked.
I was a little over prepared 😳
I fueled up with steel cut oats (banana custard style) topped with jam and PB. This has become my standard long ride brekkie and it holds me in good stead:
Sorry for the lighting, but the sun wasn’t up yet…
John took me to the Double H ranch to see me off. What a supportive hubby! I registered in and got my t-shirt:
They had a super breakfast spread set up for us.
They had so many bars. There were giant bins of bars. Must have been hundreds of bars! I didn’t really want more to eat, but I did have some fruit and snagged a bar for my bag.
Rosie was quite popular – I got a lot of comments. It ended up being a little warmer, so I wore this with a jacket (which I ended up just keeping in my bag).
I have to say I was pretty intimidated by the other 62-mile riders. There was only 1 other hybrid bike besides mine.
Serious riders today. I figured I would be in last place, but that wasn’t important. We had a safety check and then we were off. It was pretty cool at the start. I have never done a group ride, and it was so much fun being part of a pack. I was in the middle and doing some drafting for a bit. It was a very fast clip to start, much faster than I would ever go normally. I think it might have been some adrenaline.
Then the bikers stretched out in an accordian and I began falling to the back of the pack. My plan was to stop at mile 20 and have a snack. I realized I was going quite fast. There were 4 of us at the end that swapped places quite a bit, with the very last person just in front of the sag wagon. I was right in front of it for a few miles and it was really annoying, I have to say. I felt like it pushed me to go faster than I might have. I also wanted to stop and have my snack, so I signaled that I was pulling over. Of course, they asked me if I was okay. I just needed a snack! I had to fuel up before the monster hill. Then I felt very pressured, because they waited for me, so I just opened up the bar and started going again while eating.
I averaged 15.8 miles an hour for the first hour. That was fast for me! Then I hit the 5-mile hill. It was brutal. Maybe not as bad as I was thinking it might be, but it was a slog. 5 miles up uphill with varying inclines. The hill (okay, a mountain) climbed from 650 feet to 1250 feet. 😯 A few more riders came back into sight and I passed some people on this hill. Thank you so much for all your strong leg vibes! They really worked! I did not have to stop or walk up the hills today.
At mile 28 – it was a rocket down hill. I hit my top speed of 32.8 mph before I panicked and hit the brakes. I was terrified of that speed. It was also exhilarating in a scary way.
At the bottom of this hill was the rest stop. There was one at mile 7, but that was way too early in the ride. This was at mile 31. I have never ridden 31 miles without taking a longer break. I was at the 2-hour point here, which was much faster than expected. A volunteer took my picture.
Used the portapotty (surprisingly clean) and had another bar plus a coconut water and some regular water. There were a number of bikers at this rest stop. One woman said she was done. I think the hill might have injured her or something because she said she didn’t want to risk hurting herself anymore.
I took just a short break – maybe 10 minutes. I wanted to head out way in front of the sag wagon, because it irritated me and I wanted to take a break later without feeling pressured.
Onward into the headwind. That sucked LOL! I was looking forward to some flat riding and it was windy. Oh well. The scenery in the Adirondaks is just beautiful, though. I stopped at mile 45 just before the next set of hills for a granola bar. I was going to eat a Larabar, but realized the fat content of that bar would slow absorption, which I did not need at this point. This was where I stopped:
Note how cloudy? It started to rain shortly after that. I slogged up 2 more sets of hills and my thighs were complaining loudly by that time. They were saying “What happened to the cupcake break? You always have a cupcake! And where was that relaxing lunch?”
Let me tell you, biking fast in the rain isn’t a lot of fun. I was in excess of 20 mph and the rain stung my face! It only lasted about 10 miles, though, so that wasn’t bad. By this time, I was talking out loud to myself quite a bit. I realized I was doing that and would check around to see how close the nearest bike rider was 😳
I was pepping myself by comparing how much ride I had left to distances from home that I knew, like “This is just like going to Panera Bread and back.” or “This is just a ride home from Cool Beans” – to which my other self said “Yeah, but I didn’t just eat a bagel. Geez how I want a bagel.!”
Around mile 58, I really began to hit a wall. I was feeling a little emotional and tired. My thighs were aching at this point, as I had pushed them pretty hard. Plus I was really missing John as my biker buddy.
I almost cried at the last hill. It was just a small one, but I didn’t think I had any hill left in me. I just put my head down and ground it out. I wasn’t walking at this point in the ride.
Down the home stretch – I am the little dot just above the 3rd cone.
Crossing the finish line at 63 miles. I am going so fast I am a blur! (haha)
I did not come in last, there were about 4 others riders behind me by probably 5 or 10 minutes.
The happiest rider:
What is up with the thumbs- up sign today?? My bike was propping me up at this point.
I was exhausted. I could barely walk after getting off the bike. Even though I have done this distance before (and 100 miles), the pace was much different. I am used to more leisurely rides with meal stops and relaxing. This was all business. Hilly, fast, and furious!
I did a 13.2 average pace, top speed of 32.8 mph and a 2,000 calorie burn! The ride time was 4 hours and 45 minutes. That is the equivalent to running 20 miles, thank you very much. I could not take in enough calories during this ride. That is really hard to do.
The Double H staff were so friendly. I have to give props to them. At every intersection they were pointing the way and cheering us on. Plus there were signs along the road with inspirational saying on them to help keep us going. This was their first time doing a ride and I think they were very well organized.
John had me walk around a little, which was difficult, but he is a smart man, because my legs loosened up a little bit. There was a BBQ afterwards, and we had some cookies and coffee before heading home.
I showered and foam rolled and now am watching some football with a latte. We will see how I feel tomorrow. Right now I feel so satisfied and couldn’t be happier about how the ride went.
Not to mention that John is taking me out for dinner!
And a huge thank you to all of you! We raised $397 for the camp!