For some strange reason, I was contemplating a century ride this morning. I’ll break the suspense right here and tell you that I didn’t make it. But I did get a pretty good ride in – 65 miles - possibly my biggest ride ever. Earlier this year I rode 68 miles, but half of those were coming down the mountain I had just pedaled up – I’m not sure how to calibrate a mountain road ride with a town ride – I feel just about as tired today as I did after that earlier Mt Wilson ride, so maybe no calibration is needed. A mile is a mile – unless, of course it’s all down hill – then it’s called sledding.
Today’s route was very boring. That was intentional. Since I don’t have much experience with long distance riding I wanted to stay relatively close to home throughout the ride rather than find out that I can’t ride a hundred miles and still be who knows how far away.
So I rode up to the Rose Bowl (4.5 miles) then took a loop around it (3 miles more) then did that loop again 12 more times. If you like watching golf it’s not a bad loop to ride – it circles a golf course. And there are a lot of other walkers/runners/bikers to keep you entertained. Still, it’s pretty brutal because you end up counting laps and having that constant reminder of the countdown in your head just makes it harder.
During that time my feet were fairly cold, but manageable – I wore liner socks and wool socks and had the mesh on my shoes sealed with duct tape.
I did the first 50 with two bottles of water so I needed fuel. So I rode back home again and ate some leftover fajitas and some hummus on bread – probably not a very good choice of fuel, but I was pretty sure I wasn’t actually going to be able to leave the house again after lunch. I was happy to end the ride then at lunch.
But, after all that food and the low temp inside the house, I was cold. I figured I could either spend the rest of the afternoon being cold at home or being cold trying to ride a century. I managed to get back out on the bike and head back to the Rose Bowl. I was moving a lot slower at that point. I took a couple laps and started feeling a little nauseous which could have been from no food throughout the morning segment of the ride followed by a bunch of heavyish food at lunch or dehydration or electrolyte imbalance or the fact that I’d just ridden a pretty long way or most likely, as usual, a combination of factors. Plus my legs were in pain and producing no power so I headed home.
I’m glad I got out there for one last push, though. I guess it’s best to slowly work up to 100 miles – like I didn’t know that…
Now I’m craving cherry tomatoes – luckily I have a bunch so I’m happy.