Saturday, May 16, 2009

An AWESOME 86 Miles!

First thing this morning, (well, actually second thing, we had to have breakfast first, and the bike shop didn't even open until 9) I went and picked up my bike from getting her tune up. It cost me a pretty penny, but boy did she look nice! They re-taped the aero bars (they were coming unwrapped and getting very sticky and annoying), replaced the chain AND cassette (It's been having trouble shifting and making a lot of annoying sounds), and they fixed my breaks. I wanted to take a picture of how nice and shiny the chain was, but I couldn't find my camera. I'm sure you're all really bummed about that. 

When I came home, Pete put another water bottle holder behind my seat so I could cary 2 more water bottles with me. I brought two 2-hour bottles of perpetuem and two bottles of water that I switched off drinking from every 10 minutes. I also brought my whole flask full (5 servings) of Hammer Gel that I had every hour, and a little mini cliff bar - just in case. I put the cliff bar in my little bag with my spare tube, two CO2 canisters and gun, a couple tools, my phone and a $20. All for just in case.

It's weird how we associate things with whatever happened last time we did that thing. I kind of wasn't looking forward to this ride because my last few long rides have been either really hard with the bike trailer or freezing cold with rain pouring on me. Today, however, was a beautiful day and I was just going to be light and free by myself. It was really the perfect temperature for a ride - pretty warm with a nice cool breeze, but not too much of a breeze either.

I started out, and only made it a few blocks before I noticed something hitting me in the back of the legs. It was my water bottles in the back. They had tilted down so they were parallel to the ground. I went home, and Pete tightened it for me so it didn't seem like it would happen again, but he put the little screw drivers into my bag just in case it did.

I started out again on my usual ride up through Bountiful, but when I got there, the street I usually go on was closed because of construction. I rode up a little bit to see if I could get to Davis from the street I was on, but it didn't look like it so I went back down and up 89 to the next street. I still ended up having to ride on gravel for a little ways, and the road was all torn up so it was really bumpy. When I finally did get up onto Davis, I noticed that the back water bottles had tipped down again. I found a park and stopped there to fix the water bottle holder and go to the bathroom. I got it nice and tight this time so it didn't bother me again.

It seemed like I was just getting going really slowly so I decided to just go until 40 miles, no mater what the time was. 

As I got into Kaysville, I saw about a million cyclists going the opposite way as me. I didn't know what was going on, but I wonder if they thought something was wrong with me. Why was I going the wrong way? It turns out it was the Salt Lake Century, and they all started and ended just a few blocks from my house! I road the same rout as them for quite a while, though sometimes they would take a detour but end up on the same road as me again. They were pretty much all gone by the time I turned around, though.

I turned around when I hit 40 miles, and that was exactly at 2:50 which seemed like the perfect time to turn around too. I was not feeling very good at this point. I was sore and tired and thinking, "How am I going to do this?!" I rode for 10 more minutes until my timer went off at 3 hours. Then I stopped and switched my water bottles out so I could reach the fuller ones better, and I got my cliff bar out. I thought the cute little mini cliff bar was just perfect because I never want to eat a whole one of those. I usually don't really like them, but this one was Chocolate Brownie, and I really enjoyed it. It was kind of nice to have something to eat and something to think about other than just "peddle, peddle, peddle."

I passed 56 miles at around 3:30, and that's about how fast Pete did his first loop of the Ironman so I was happy with that! Then before I knew it, I was back in familiar territory and my timer beeped for 4:00. I was like, "More apple pie already? Don't mind if I do!" Is it weird that I still like my apple cinnamon Hammer Gel so much? I was starting to feel better now.

At around mile 70, I got emotional. I wasn't in pain or sad or anything, but an SUV with a bunch of little girls passed me and they all yelled "Hi!" to me. I waved back and smiled. This made me think about how I'll have people cheering me on during the Ironman and this just kind of made me get misty eyed. It didn't last long, though. I had things to do.

You would think I would have been dreading the big, long, hard hill going up 400 North, but I actually welcomed the hills for a change of pace. I was getting sick of just going 16 mph on practically flat ground for so long. Going up that big hill was hard, but my heart-rate stayed below 170, and even though it was hot only going 5 mph, I felt good. When I got to the top, I stopped to put more sunscreen on, then I started up again.

From here on out it seemed like my bike was trying to get home, and I just had to help her a little. Maybe I should give my bike a name? We do spend a lot of time together. . . Anyway, I just felt so fast on the way home! It was awesome, and I felt so good! I was surprised that I felt so much better when I hit mile 80 then I did when I hit mile 40! It was just fun, and I was going about 20 mph most of the way home from Bountiful. When I got home, I felt so good. Much better than my last few long rides where I could hardly get myself to peddle. I would never have thought I could feel that good after 5:26 hours of riding.

My total distance was 86.7 miles with an average of 16.5 mph! Wahoo!

My top speed (at least when I dared to glance down and check) was 38 mph going down that 500 North. That's almost 40 miles an hour guys! And I didn't even cry! Are there any other cyclists out there who can top that? Come on, I know you've all gone faster than 40. Tell us your top speeds! (I know Pete's is really fast, maybe he'll grace us with a comment about it).

Right after my ride, I ran for 20 minutes, and it was a good run. Like I said, I felt really good. I was able to run at a pretty normal pace without a problem, and it was fun. What a great day! I hope everyone else had a good day too, it was beautiful!


  1. Hi Colleen, I enjoyed reading about your bike ride. Wow. What an effort...your training is going well. Still comfortable after five plus hours! I enjoyed your story about the waving girls...I know what you mean. My husband and I did a ride from Tecate to Encennada, Mexico years ago and the children lined the streets cheering and waving. They passed us notes...mine said, I love you and my name is...their printing was so innocent and careful. I was filled with an outpouring of love for these children...

    I left an award for you at Oasis Writing Link. Come over and check it out. I hope that you get more people to read about your project and more financial contributions to support your cause to purchase more nets. <3

  2. My top speed is around 50mph, which I hit for a few seconds coming down Wolf Creek Pass. After my crash and subsequent broken collar bone, I'm pretty hesitant about going super fast for the time being. Lance recently wrote on twitter that they were cruising around 50mph for 30K at the end of a stage in the Gira di Itallia. That is a long time to go that fast, with all those riders.

  3. Cynthia - Thank you so much for the award and the support! I saw the award on your blog, but hadn't commented about it yet. I'm still kind of in shock! :) Those kids sounds very sweet, what an amazing experience that must have been! How far is that? I don't know where Tecate is.

    Pete - thank you for that. See, I knew it was fast! Doing that speed for 30k, though, wow! That's unbelievable!