Sunday, July 20, 2008

So much for weekly blogging!

I really did intend to blog weekly. :)

Yesterday was our first 50 miler!! We started out in Estacada and rode up to the Ripplebrook Ranger station and back. It was a glorious day. Started out cool and misty as we headed up into the mountains along the Clackamas river. Since we were headed up a river valley, it was pretty much a constant elevation gain. Sure, there were some declines but they weren't as easy as one would think given the nature of the landscape. We hit one long hill - it was tough but I can tell my hill technique is definitely getting better. I was totally looking forward to the descent on that baby during the ride back. At the ranger station we stopped to eat lunch and by this time the sun had come out. After lunch and a short break I started heading back. I quickly realized the ride back would NOT be as easy as I thought. You know, you figure if it's a constant elevation gain on the way out, it'll be a decline on the way back. Yeah, that might be so but it sure didn't feel like it with the massive headwind we had to pedal against. Jiminy crickets! That big hill? My max speed down it was only 27mph. I even had to pedal to reach that. Pedaling down hill? Gah. But I made it.

My total ride time ON the bike was 3:46:18, 50.5 miles, 13.4 avg mph.

Here is a link to some pictures I took along the route:

Another recent notable ride was a few weeks ago at Hagg Lake. We were scheduled to do 45 miles which started at McMenamins Grand Lodge, out to Hagg Lake, two loops around the lake, a little loop around a near by town and back to the Lodge. Sounds easy enough. It was hilly around the lake - great time to practice shifting. This all would have been completely doable had we not had record breaking heat that day. Yes, the final temp that day was 102 I think? When I thought I'd pass out at mile 40 it was 92 degrees. I was beginning to have symptoms of heat stroke/exhaustion so I called our support vehicle to pick me up. This happened of course because I was too stubborn to skip the loop around the town like some people did and just head back to the lodge. Nope, not me. I can do it! Yes, sometimes I'm not the smartest kid on the block. At least I had the sense to get picked up and not pass out on my bike along the highway.

So those are the latest updates. Training is going fantastic, the team is amazing and I'm looking forward to continued mileage increases!