I woke up at 2:30. I am doing fine on 7 hours of sleep, thank you, but pass out like 7:30PM. I am such a loser but it works for me as I LOVE the early morning hours to straighten up the house (such as it is with a constant triathlon tornado blowing through), load bottles and stuff into the dishwasher, write blog posts, gaze upon my psycho training plan and review my master TO DO list to see what I might be able to knock out that day.
It was chilly outside, only 51, and the hourly forecast called for temps to drop even further by 7AM, which is when I wanted to start riding. I chose a riding outfit including tights and a long-sleeve jersey from Jordan Rapp with a Descente underlayer on top, long socks, toe warmers, helmet beanie, and my awesome Castelli wind stopper gloves. I'd fixed my bottles on Wednesday this week (usually I don't do it until Friday) because I had to go to downtown Chicago on Thursday to get my new laptop (which I still haven't finished configuring because I haven't had time but that's on the list for tomorrow) and Friday I had a repairman coming (to fix my oven YAY it's fixed!) and then a massage and of course, work, so I got the head start on the bottles.
Pre-ride I took in:
- Toasted Bay's Sourdough English Muffin with blackberry jam on top
- Hardboiled egg split in two on top of the muffin
- 3 cups of coffee with fat-free Hazelnut Coffemate (yes, it has SUGAR!)
- 300 calories of Ultrafuel, my sugary goodness that I use for any workouts over 3 hours
- 1 can of Coke during the drive to Dekalb.
When I arrived at the Egyptian Theater, where the ride began, it was pretty chilly when I got out of my car. I got there just after 6:30AM, and there were already a good number of riders getting ready. Some of them just had shorts on, and while I am pretty tough, I am tiny, and knew I'd be better off covered up today, even if it got to 70. I'd rather be a tad warm than at all cold!
Here's the outside of the theater:
I figured from the outside facade of the building that it must be pretty cool looking on the inside, so I went in and snapped a few pics. First, here I am in my lucky Jordan Rapp jersey (official good luck to him in Kona!):
I talked to a girl in line who had just started doing triathlons this year and she was so excited, and I didn't say anything about myself (after all, I was dressed like a roadie with a Castelli hat and all) until after I'd asked about all her races and times and stuff, then all I said to her was, "I've done a bunch of triathlons."
Got registered, got a map, failed to ask what the road/signage markings were for turns, and went back to car to retrieve Skull Kingdom and get started, but I had to pee again, because cold weather really makes me need to pee a lot. I was going to use some shrubs in the parking lot, but there was a disgusting porta-potty that I used instead.
I headed out and within one mile was lost--no signs, no arrows. And the map I thought I'd stuffed into my back pocket was not there. I must have just dropped it on the ground. There were a few guys around me (trying to keep up with me) and I asked if they had maps, and NO. Fuck. Well it took awhile to find someone riding WITH A FUCKING MAP and then we got on track.
The ride is a hub and spoke system, which is cool. We ride out to central rest station and then there are 3 different loops from it, so theoretically, it was 11.5 miles to the rest station, and then each loop 25 miles, do them all you have 100. Well it took me 1:07 to get to the rest station (I typically don't look at mileage because time controls when I eat/drink), and I'm thinking fuck I must have added a bunch! Or their mileage was wrong. It was a little of both. I asked a volunteer for a map at the rest station and they didn't have any! OK, poor organization, but I can't blame the volunteers. They had all kinds of food there--PB&J sandwiches, bagels, fruit, GORP, etc., but I was on the Infinit and didn't want any of that yet.
I chose Loop #1 called Burlington first, as it was allegedly the most scenic countryside. It was really pretty! But it wasn't fucking 25 miles! It was actually 30 something! But luckily there was a water stop in the middle of nowhere because I only had a 16-oz. bottle of water in addition to my (2) 3-hour concentrated Infinit bottles. At the water stop, I briefly chatted with a woman who was on an MTB, and asked about her shirt. It was from the Toys for Tots motorcycle ride, that I know of. I asked her what kind of bike she rides, and she said Kawasaki Vulcan. *I* had a Kawasaki Vulcan way back when! I asked the year of hers--1996--mine was an 85, I think, and mine was only a 550 whereas she has a 700. I asked her which type of bike she likes best, and she said bicycle, because it's less nerve-wracking. I have to agree, there. Except that even on bicycles, people are trying to kill us!
The Burlington loop was blessedly free of traffic and had some decent rollers, but nothing I would call a major hill. Great roads, lots of corn and soybeans, cute country homes, nice smells! When I got back to rest station, I asked if anyone knew the exact mileage of the loop and where they were at, and people who HAD NOT BEEN LOST at the beginning like me (I must have missed just a single turn) had like 38 miles where I was up to 46 already, so yay me!
I was a bit hungry-ish at this point so I chowed a 1/2 PB&J and washed it down with Infinit. I looked at the map on the wall to see which loop I'd do next--while I really liked #1, I didn't want too much excess mileage since I'd planned on riding again next day, maybe even another century. Of the other 2 loops, one was labelled for "advanced riders," and I asked if that meant HILLS because I LOVE FUCKING HILLS but no, they said it was just on major roads with a lot of traffic, WTF??? So I decided on Loop #2 next.
Loop #2 rocked (Kaneville loop) because it started out going into the wind, which meant we'd have some tailwind on the way in. I got about 1.5 miles in and passed a small girl on a tri bike riding next to a guy on a road bike. About 30 seconds later, she rides up on me pedalling like mad to catch me, gets right next to me and says, "Are you a misfit?" My addled brain is trying to process what she just asked me and I had no idea how to answer, so I just said, "Excuse me?" She said there's a tri group called Misfits, and she thought I was one because of the skulls on my bike. I smiled and said, "No, I'm not in any club," (except the one in my head LOL), then a few seconds later added, "I am a social misfit at times, though." She could not keep up with me and dropped back.
I continued on Loop #2 and into a headwind (going south, I think), and then we hit this road called McGirr, which was fucking awesome. The name reminded me of the ERMAHGERD meme, and I had miles of laughs saying ER MCGIRR to myself or even out loud. I was needing water and pissing regularly, so luckily about 15 miles into this loop, just after we turned off McGirr was a library, with a porta-potty. So that was good. Then 10 more miles and back to rest station, and this time the loop ACTUALLY WAS 25 miles!!! Well, 25.5.
I talked to and met some guys, 2 of them doing Ironmans, and 2 of them just riding, and we were laughing and stuff, and they got all gaga when I told them what the hell I've done, including Ultraman. It still flabbergasts me that people think it's such a big deal, since I figure if *I* can do it, almost anyone can. Anyway, I had to decide on my last loopage, and decided #2 again would be fun, so I asked these 2 guys (not the triathletes since I already knew they were faster than me) how fast they were riding, and they said 15-16. I thought they were kidding or sandbagging, and told them to suck my wheel so we could ride together. Well that lasted all of 2 miles and then I was gone. Once again, I had total fun on ER MCGIRR Road, and this time when I turned off, I needed water. I asked a maintenance dude outside the library, and he said it was open and there were water fountains in there. Which there were! And they were ice cold! I used the "Girls" bathroom, too!
I was happy to be heading back, and maybe 5 miles later who do I run into but the 2 dudes who weren't as fast as me, and I'm WTF how can this be? They said they were right on with the turns and all, so I guess there was some turn I missed which caused me to get an extra 3 miles on this loop! Once again, YAY ME! I passed them again, got back to rest station and chatted again with the triathlete dudes (one doing IMAZ and other doing IMFL), we had some more yucks, then I had to get out of there.
The way back to Dekalb consists primarily of FUCKING KESLINGER ROAD which was the most hilly road of the ride PLUS A HEADWIND!!! Fuck. Oh well, gotta get 'er done. I forgot to mention I'd been riding all day with a fucked up right foot, care of some shoe/insole/metatarsal pad experiments I'd done on Friday with my running shoes. It cause my anterior tibialis and peroneals to go all FUCK YOU on me causing the front of my ankle to hurt like a mofo. But I kept thinking as long as I didn't feel like I was making it worse by biking, I was OK. It did hurt to unclip, but oh well. That is why I wasn't riding like a bat out of hell.
FINALLY we got off the road from hell and were close to Dekalb. A volunteer had said it was 14 miles back, which meant I'd end with 111 miles, which was cool, but of course the voices in my head are saying RIDE MORE SO YOU GET TO 112 YOU DUMBASS, but I was resisting them. Finally I saw a sign WELCOME TO DEKALB, and I said DE-FUCKING-KALB I was ready to be done!
Well I roll into town and I'm already over 111 miles, I'm like, OK NOW I have to get to 112, and I was maybe 2 blocks from the theater, and I yell to some dude who'd just finished I'M AT 111.75 DO I RIDE AROUND TO GET 112??? And he knew the correct answer, which was YES!!! However, I rolled past the theater into the parking lot, got to my car and was like HOLY FUCKING HELL LOOK AT THIS!
Here's what I had during the ride:
- 6 hours of 1/2 Money Shot and 1/2 Money Shot 25% Less Caffeine custom Infinit mix. 245 calories per hour
- 1/2 of PB&J on white bread sandwich
- 1 fun-size Payday
- At least 6 16-oz bottles of water, probably more like 10.
- Have beer when we are done. DUH.
- Have a whole pile of extra maps at the rest station since we are all clumsy and drop them like they're hot.
- McGirr Road is FUCKING AWESOME!
- 1/2 egg salad sandwich on white bread
- 1/2 tuna salad sandwich on white bread
- 2.5 cups of beef/vegetable soup (YUM!)
- single serving of Lay's potato chips
- 1.5 scoops Endurox R4 mixed w/water
- about 5 1" cubes of cheese and 4 crackers
I drove home rather fast, using the cruise control because my right ankle and glute were hurting like mofos. Got home, immediately cracked a beer, OMG it was the BEST BEER EVER! Unpacked the car, showered up (BEST SHOWER EVER!), dumped pics out of camera and onto Facebook while icing my right glute and ankle. When I looked at my ankle, I actually had this 1" red lump on it, whoops! But it went down pretty quick with the ice.
Then I met my brother Mike for sushi and me talking 200MPH because I was hopped up on caffeine and having had such a great ride and I've got 11 weeks until IMCOZ and I am so happy and feel great! Here's the rest of the food I had yesterday:
- 1 Harp Lager
- 1 Giant Sapporo with dinner
- 1 Raspberry beer just before bed and when I woke up 2 hours after my first sleep
- 2 brownies that I brought home from the ride. I should have brought more
- At least 23 pieces of assorted sushi rolls and nigiri, possibly 30
- 2 small fortune cookies
- 1 bowl of Miso soup
- 2 small pieces of Hershey's dark chocolate
I didn't add up my calories from yesterday, but I probably needed at least 5,000, so I will just keep working on them today ;)
Oh by the way, I averaged 18mph yesterday, not bad for an old lady with a bum ankle!!! Today I'm signed up for another ride, but it's going to rain all day, so fuck that, I'm going to have fun with my girl, Lori, on the trainer (and she might run on the treadmill), for about 3 hours, and then we are going to EAT FOOD!!!
Two more big weeks of training and then a rest week. YAY!!! My ankle should be fine by Tuesday, which is when I do my next scheduled run. Meanwhile...MORE BIKING!