On Friday, my Google calendar alarm beeped a reminder: Ride 50+ miles this weekend.
I lamented outloud that I shouldn’t have such high expectations and a colleague of mine said he and his wife were riding on Saturday and that if I wanted to join, I’d easily hit 45 miles army the least.
So, I convinced my normally Saturday-sleep-in husband that I would be cycling and if he’d like to join he could.
9 am start. Ughhh. The night before, we ate a pretty good dinner.
Grilled skirt steak with raw veggie salad and grilled slices of potatoes.
The next morning, we wake at 7 am and get motivated to ride. Thankfully it is sunny already, but a little brisk.
Long story short, we rode about 40 miles, had lunch in a little town called Corralitos, then decided to add a little spur to our road ride. The day was beautiful, so we continued on and all in all, after looking at my Garmin, we were over 60 miles. By the time we arrived at our start point, it was a total of 70 miles.
Saturday was the longest I’ve ever been on a bike in one sitting. Without it being a race or event, I think it was not as big z deal in my brain as I could’ve made it out to be. I casually rode an amount that was normally something I would’ve been afraid to try.
5 hours, 4700+ feet of elevation, 3 bottles of water, 1 peanut butter Bonk Breaker, 1 giant hot dog with relish, onions, mustard, and ketchup (never again will I eat that if I have to do more climbing), and a quart of apple juice.
A few things I learned:
1. Chamois cream is needed for anything over 45miles. I have comfy cycling shorts, but my bum was raw and reddish on my sit bones after the ride. It hurt to sit on anything hard and I had to use ointment to sooth the burning sensation. Luckily I didn’t chaffe so badly to get sores or an actual blister.
2. Death gripping your handle bars while descending on pothole ridden poorly maintained, crumbling asphalt hurts. I finally “relaxed” in mountain biking, letting the terrain undulate beneath me while gripping only lightly on the breaks and off the saddle, but my not knowing the roads and routes seized my brain into thinking every moment was a deathly maneuver, which it wasn’t.
3. Eat and drink when you’re stopped. Riding with others gives you a chance to challenge one another and wait for one another. My cycling buddies normally wait at major intersections or end of big climbing segments. At those moments, it’s good to keep hydrated,stand under some type of tree for sun protection, and nibble on something. My hubby bonked a little because he only brought along those mini gummy candies to eat. A 5 hour ride burns 3000 calories for him. Each of those gummies is like 20 calories. It sounds pointless to even expend energy to chew one, right?
The route was a part of a larger century ride I’ve been gearing up to do, however, the roads are so bumpy that I’m second guessing my desire to ride the challenge. I will try various segments this month to see if I really want to do it.